$400 in 1870 → $7,399.27 in 2018

Inflation Calculator

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U.S. Inflation Rate, $400 in 1870 to 2018

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics consumer price index, the dollar experienced an average inflation rate of 1.99% per year. Prices in 2018 are 1749.8% higher than prices in 1870.

In other words, $400 in 1870 is equivalent in purchasing power to $7,399.27 in 2018, a difference of $6,999.27 over 148 years.

The current inflation rate is now 2.80%1. If this number holds, $400 today will be equivalent to $411.20 next year. The current inflation rate page gives more detail on the latest official inflation rates.

Inflation from 1870 to 2018
Cumulative price change 1749.82%
Average inflation rate 1.99%
Converted amount ($400 base) $7,399.27
Price difference ($400 base) $6,999.27
CPI in 2018 251.59


U.S. inflation chart since 1665


The above data describe the CPI for all items. Also of note is U.S. "Core Inflation," which measures the CPI for all items except for the more volatile categories of food and energy. Core inflation averaged NaN% per year between 1870 and 2018. In 1870, core inflation was 0.00%.


Inflation rates for specific categories

New cars · Bread · Public transportation · More

Inflation-adjusted measures

S&P 500 price · S&P 500 earnings · Shiller P/E

Buying power of $400 since 1870

Below are calculations of buying power over time for $400 in 1870 (price index tracking began in 1913). Each of these USD amounts below is equivalent in terms of what it could buy at the time:

Year USD Value Inflation Rate
1870 $400.00 -
1871 $372.22 -6.94%
1872 $372.22 0.00%
1873 $366.67 -1.49%
1874 $350.00 -4.55%
1875 $333.33 -4.76%
1876 $327.78 -1.67%
1877 $322.22 -1.69%
1878 $305.56 -5.17%
1879 $305.56 0.00%
1880 $316.67 3.64%
1881 $316.67 0.00%
1882 $316.67 0.00%
1883 $311.11 -1.75%
1884 $300.00 -3.57%
1885 $294.44 -1.85%
1886 $288.89 -1.89%
1887 $288.89 0.00%
1888 $288.89 0.00%
1889 $283.33 -1.92%
1890 $277.78 -1.96%
1891 $277.78 0.00%
1892 $277.78 0.00%
1893 $277.78 0.00%
1894 $261.11 -6.00%
1895 $261.11 0.00%
1896 $261.11 0.00%
1897 $255.56 -2.13%
1898 $255.56 0.00%
1899 $255.56 0.00%
1900 $261.11 2.17%
1901 $261.11 0.00%
1902 $261.11 0.00%
1903 $272.22 4.26%
1904 $272.22 0.00%
1905 $272.22 0.00%
1906 $277.78 2.04%
1907 $288.89 4.00%
1908 $283.33 -1.92%
1909 $277.78 -1.96%
1910 $288.89 4.00%
1911 $288.89 0.00%
1912 $294.44 1.92%
1913 $291.16 -1.12%
1914 $294.10 1.01%
1915 $297.04 1.00%
1916 $320.57 7.92%
1917 $376.45 17.43%
1918 $444.09 17.97%
1919 $508.79 14.57%
1920 $588.20 15.61%
1921 $526.44 -10.50%
1922 $494.09 -6.15%
1923 $502.91 1.79%
1924 $502.91 0.00%
1925 $514.68 2.34%
1926 $520.56 1.14%
1927 $511.73 -1.69%
1928 $502.91 -1.72%
1929 $502.91 0.00%
1930 $491.15 -2.34%
1931 $447.03 -8.98%
1932 $402.92 -9.87%
1933 $382.33 -5.11%
1934 $394.09 3.08%
1935 $402.92 2.24%
1936 $408.80 1.46%
1937 $423.50 3.60%
1938 $414.68 -2.08%
1939 $408.80 -1.42%
1940 $411.74 0.72%
1941 $432.33 5.00%
1942 $479.38 10.88%
1943 $508.79 6.13%
1944 $517.62 1.73%
1945 $529.38 2.27%
1946 $573.50 8.33%
1947 $655.84 14.36%
1948 $708.78 8.07%
1949 $699.96 -1.24%
1950 $708.78 1.26%
1951 $764.66 7.88%
1952 $779.37 1.92%
1953 $785.25 0.75%
1954 $791.13 0.75%
1955 $788.19 -0.37%
1956 $799.95 1.49%
1957 $826.42 3.31%
1958 $849.95 2.85%
1959 $855.83 0.69%
1960 $870.54 1.72%
1961 $879.36 1.01%
1962 $888.18 1.00%
1963 $899.95 1.32%
1964 $911.71 1.31%
1965 $926.42 1.61%
1966 $952.89 2.86%
1967 $982.30 3.09%
1968 $1,023.47 4.19%
1969 $1,079.35 5.46%
1970 $1,141.11 5.72%
1971 $1,191.11 4.38%
1972 $1,229.34 3.21%
1973 $1,305.81 6.22%
1974 $1,449.91 11.04%
1975 $1,582.26 9.13%
1976 $1,673.43 5.76%
1977 $1,782.25 6.50%
1978 $1,917.53 7.59%
1979 $2,135.17 11.35%
1980 $2,423.39 13.50%
1981 $2,673.37 10.32%
1982 $2,838.07 6.16%
1983 $2,929.24 3.21%
1984 $3,055.70 4.32%
1985 $3,164.52 3.56%
1986 $3,223.34 1.86%
1987 $3,340.98 3.65%
1988 $3,479.21 4.14%
1989 $3,646.84 4.82%
1990 $3,843.89 5.40%
1991 $4,005.65 4.21%
1992 $4,126.23 3.01%
1993 $4,249.75 2.99%
1994 $4,358.57 2.56%
1995 $4,482.09 2.83%
1996 $4,614.43 2.95%
1997 $4,720.31 2.29%
1998 $4,793.84 1.56%
1999 $4,899.71 2.21%
2000 $5,064.41 3.36%
2001 $5,208.52 2.85%
2002 $5,290.87 1.58%
2003 $5,411.45 2.28%
2004 $5,555.56 2.66%
2005 $5,743.78 3.39%
2006 $5,929.06 3.23%
2007 $6,097.94 2.85%
2008 $6,332.07 3.84%
2009 $6,309.54 -0.36%
2010 $6,413.03 1.64%
2011 $6,615.46 3.16%
2012 $6,752.37 2.07%
2013 $6,851.27 1.46%
2014 $6,962.41 1.62%
2015 $6,970.68 0.12%
2016 $7,058.61 1.26%
2017 $7,199.16 1.99%
2018 $7,399.27 2.78%*
* Not final. See inflation summary for latest details.

News headlines from 1870

Politics and news often influence economic performance. Here's what was happening at the time:

  • New York begins building the Brooklyn Bridge (the bridge is completed in 1883).
  • Austria inaugurates Wiener Musikverein, also known as the Great Hall, in Vienna.
  • The Carson City mint, in Nevada, starts issuing coins.

Data Source & Citation

Raw data for these calculations comes from the Bureau of Labor Statistics' (CPI), established in 1913. Inflation data from 1665 to 1912 is sourced from a historical study conducted by political science professor Robert Sahr at Oregon State University.

You may use the following MLA citation for this page: “$400 in 1870 → 2018 | Inflation Calculator.” U.S. Official Inflation Data, Alioth Finance, 23 Jun. 2018, https://www.officialdata.org/1870-dollars?amount=400.


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