$20 in 1990 → $38.50 in 2018

Inflation Calculator

$

U.S. Inflation Rate, $20 in 1990 to 2018

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics consumer price index, the dollar experienced an average inflation rate of 2.37% per year. Prices in 2018 are 92.5% higher than prices in 1990.

In other words, $20 in 1990 is equivalent in purchasing power to $38.50 in 2018, a difference of $18.50 over 28 years.

The current inflation rate is now 2.80%1. If this number holds, $20 today will be equivalent to $20.56 next year. The current inflation rate page gives more detail on the latest official inflation rates.

Inflation from 1990 to 2018
Cumulative price change 92.50%
Average inflation rate 2.37%
Converted amount ($20 base) $38.50
Price difference ($20 base) $18.50
CPI in 1990 130.7
CPI in 2018 251.59


U.S. inflation from 1913 to 2018


Inflation rates for specific categories

College tuition and fees · Housing · Airline fares · More

Inflation-adjusted measures

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

How to calculate the inflation rate for $20 since 1990

This inflation calculator uses the following inflation rate formula:

CPI in 2018 / CPI in 1990 * 1990 USD value = 2018 USD value

Then plug in historical CPI values. The U.S. CPI was 130.7 in the year 1990 and 251.59 in 2018:

251.59 / 130.7 * $20 = $38.50

$20 in 1990 has the same "purchasing power" or "buying power" as $38.50 in 2018.


Here are calculations of buying power over time for $20 in 1990 (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
1990 $20.00 5.40%
1991 $20.84 4.21%
1992 $21.47 3.01%
1993 $22.11 2.99%
1994 $22.68 2.56%
1995 $23.32 2.83%
1996 $24.01 2.95%
1997 $24.56 2.29%
1998 $24.94 1.56%
1999 $25.49 2.21%
2000 $26.35 3.36%
2001 $27.10 2.85%
2002 $27.53 1.58%
2003 $28.16 2.28%
2004 $28.91 2.66%
2005 $29.89 3.39%
2006 $30.85 3.23%
2007 $31.73 2.85%
2008 $32.95 3.84%
2009 $32.83 -0.36%
2010 $33.37 1.64%
2011 $34.42 3.16%
2012 $35.13 2.07%
2013 $35.65 1.46%
2014 $36.23 1.62%
2015 $36.27 0.12%
2016 $36.73 1.26%
2017 $37.46 1.99%
2018 $38.50 2.78%*
* Not final. See inflation summary for latest details.

News headlines from 1990

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

  • Nelson Mandela is released having spent 27 years in South African prison.
  • The Hubble Space Telescope takes its first photos from space.
  • Dr Penny Jamieson, becomes the first woman to be made an Anglican Bishop, in New Zeeland
  • The United States sends troops to Saudi Arabia, marking the beginning of Operation Desert Shield.

Inflation Data Source

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: “$20 in 1990 → 2018 | Inflation Calculator.” U.S. Official Inflation Data, Alioth Finance, 13 Jun. 2018, https://www.officialdata.org/1990-dollars-in-2018?amount=20.


» Read more about inflation.