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Result: ¥100 in 1987 → ¥460.79 in 2020


Why a renminbi today is worth only 22% of a renminbi in 1987

Updated: September 11, 2020

According to the World Bank consumer price index for China, today's prices in 2020 are 360.79% higher than average prices since 1987. This means that a renminbi today only buys 21.70% of what it could buy in 1987. The Chinese Renminbi experienced an average inflation rate of 4.74% per year during this period, causing the real value of a renminbi to decrease.

In other words, ¥100 in 1987 is equivalent in purchasing power to about ¥460.79 in 2020, a difference of ¥360.79 over 33 years. This inflation data is collected by the World Bank and is specific to China.

The 1987 inflation rate was 7.23%. The current year-over-year inflation rate (2019 to 2020) is now 2.90%1. If this number holds, ¥100 today will be equivalent in buying power to ¥102.90 next year.


Inflation from 1987 to 2020
Cumulative price change 360.79%
Average inflation rate 4.74%
Converted amount (¥100 base) ¥460.79
Price difference (¥100 base) ¥360.79
CPI in 1987 27.933
CPI in 2020 128.710
Inflation in 1987 7.23%
Inflation in 2020 2.90%

CNY Inflation since 1986
Annual Rate, the World Bank CPI
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Buying power of ¥100 in 1987

This chart shows a calculation of buying power equivalence for ¥100 in 1987 (price index tracking began in 1986).

For example, if you started with ¥100, you would need to end with ¥460.79 in order to "adjust" for inflation (sometimes refered to as "beating inflation").

When ¥100 is equivalent to ¥460.79 over time, that means that the "real value" of a single Chinese renminbi decreases over time. In other words, a renminbi will pay for fewer items at the store.

This effect explains how inflation erodes the value of a renminbi over time. By calculating the value in 1987 dollars, the chart below shows how ¥100 is worth less over 33 years.

According to the World Bank, each of these CNY amounts below is equal in terms of what it could buy at the time:

Renminbi inflation: 1987-2020
Year Renminbi Value Inflation Rate
1987 ¥100.00 7.23%
1988 ¥118.81 18.81%
1989 ¥140.49 18.25%
1990 ¥144.78 3.05%
1991 ¥149.93 3.56%
1992 ¥159.45 6.35%
1993 ¥182.75 14.61%
1994 ¥227.08 24.26%
1995 ¥265.21 16.79%
1996 ¥287.26 8.31%
1997 ¥295.26 2.79%
1998 ¥292.98 -0.77%
1999 ¥288.87 -1.40%
2000 ¥289.88 0.35%
2001 ¥291.96 0.72%
2002 ¥289.82 -0.73%
2003 ¥293.09 1.13%
2004 ¥304.30 3.82%
2005 ¥309.71 1.78%
2006 ¥314.82 1.65%
2007 ¥329.98 4.82%
2008 ¥349.53 5.93%
2009 ¥346.99 -0.73%
2010 ¥358.00 3.18%
2011 ¥377.89 5.55%
2012 ¥387.79 2.62%
2013 ¥397.95 2.62%
2014 ¥405.60 1.92%
2015 ¥411.43 1.44%
2016 ¥419.65 2.00%
2017 ¥426.34 1.59%
2018 ¥435.19 2.07%
2019 ¥447.80 2.90%
2020 ¥460.79 2.90%*
* Compared to previous annual rate. Not final. See inflation summary for latest 12-month trailing value.
Click to show 27 more rows

This conversion table shows various other 1987 amounts in today's renminbi, based on the 360.79% change in prices:

Conversion Table: Value of a renminbi today
Initial value Equivalent value
¥1 renminbi in 1987 ¥4.61 renminbi today
¥5 renminbi in 1987 ¥23.04 renminbi today
¥10 renminbi in 1987 ¥46.08 renminbi today
¥50 renminbi in 1987 ¥230.39 renminbi today
¥100 renminbi in 1987 ¥460.79 renminbi today
¥500 renminbi in 1987 ¥2,303.93 renminbi today
¥1,000 renminbi in 1987 ¥4,607.86 renminbi today
¥5,000 renminbi in 1987 ¥23,039.31 renminbi today
¥10,000 renminbi in 1987 ¥46,078.61 renminbi today
¥50,000 renminbi in 1987 ¥230,393.07 renminbi today
¥100,000 renminbi in 1987 ¥460,786.14 renminbi today
¥500,000 renminbi in 1987 ¥2,303,930.68 renminbi today
¥1,000,000 renminbi in 1987 ¥4,607,861.35 renminbi today

How to Calculate Inflation Rate for ¥100 since 1987

Our calculations use the following inflation rate formula to calculate the change in value between 1987 and today:

CPI today CPI in 1987
×
1987 CNY value
=
Today's value

Then plug in historical CPI values. The Chinese CPI was 27.9326137384 in the year 1987 and 128.70961136394504 in 2020:

128.7096113639450427.9326137384
×
¥100
=
¥460.79

¥100 in 1987 has the same "purchasing power" or "buying power" as ¥460.79 in 2020.

To get the total inflation rate for the 33 years between 1987 and 2020, we use the following formula:

CPI in 2020 - CPI in 1987CPI in 1987
×
100
=
Cumulative inflation rate (33 years)

Plugging in the values to this equation, we get:

128.70961136394504 - 27.932613738427.9326137384
×
100
=
361%

News headlines from 1987

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

  • New Zealand becomes the only nation to legislate against nuclear power, when their Labour government legislates against nuclear weapons and nuclear powered vessels.
  • Margaret Thatcher becomes the first British PM in 160 years to win a third consecutive term in office.
  • The Dow Jones stock index falls by 508.32 points, the event is later known as Black Monday.

Data Source & Citation

You may use the following MLA citation for this page: “China Inflation Calculator: World Bank data, 1987-2020 (CNY).” Official Inflation Data, Alioth Finance, 29 Sep. 2020, https://www.officialdata.org/china/inflation.

Special thanks to QuickChart for their chart image API, which is used for chart downloads.


Ian Webster

About the author

Ian Webster is an engineer and data expert based in San Mateo, California. He has worked for Google, NASA, and consulted for governments around the world on data pipelines and data analysis. Disappointed by the lack of clear resources on the impacts of inflation on economic indicators, Ian believes this website serves as a valuable public tool. Ian earned his degree in Computer Science from Dartmouth College.

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Inflation from 1987 to 2020
Cumulative price change 360.79%
Average inflation rate 4.74%
Converted amount (¥100 base) ¥460.79
Price difference (¥100 base) ¥360.79
CPI in 1987 27.933
CPI in 2020 128.710
Inflation in 1987 7.23%
Inflation in 2020 2.90%