U.S. inflation rate in 1919: 14.57%

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Inflation since 1919 and its effect on dollar value

The consumer price index (CPI) in 1919 was 17.3. It was 15.1 in the previous year. This change in CPI is used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics to calculate inflation.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics consumer price index, the dollar experienced an average inflation rate of 2.74% per year. Prices in 2018 are 1354.3% higher than prices in 1919.

In other words, $100 in 1919 is equivalent in purchasing power to $1,454.28 in 2018, a difference of $1,354.28 over 99 years.

The current inflation rate is now 2.80%1. If this number holds, $100 today will be equivalent to $102.80 next year. The current inflation rate page gives more detail on the latest official inflation rates.

Inflation from 1919 to 2018
Cumulative price change 1354.28%
Average inflation rate 2.74%
Converted amount ($100 base) $1,454.28
Price difference ($100 base) $1,354.28
CPI in 1919 17.3
CPI in 2018 251.59


U.S. inflation from 1913 to 2018


Inflation rates for specific categories

Frankfurters · Medical care · Indoor plants and flowers · More

Inflation-adjusted measures

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

How to calculate the inflation rate for $100 since 1919

This inflation calculator uses the following inflation rate formula:

CPI in 2018 / CPI in 1919 * 1919 USD value = 2018 USD value

Then plug in historical CPI values. The U.S. CPI was 17.3 in the year 1919 and 251.59 in 2018:

251.59 / 17.3 * $100 = $1,454.28

$100 in 1919 has the same "purchasing power" or "buying power" as $1,454.28 in 2018.


Here are calculations of buying power over time for $100 in 1919 (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
1919 $100.00 14.57%
1920 $115.61 15.61%
1921 $103.47 -10.50%
1922 $97.11 -6.15%
1923 $98.84 1.79%
1924 $98.84 0.00%
1925 $101.16 2.34%
1926 $102.31 1.14%
1927 $100.58 -1.69%
1928 $98.84 -1.72%
1929 $98.84 0.00%
1930 $96.53 -2.34%
1931 $87.86 -8.98%
1932 $79.19 -9.87%
1933 $75.14 -5.11%
1934 $77.46 3.08%
1935 $79.19 2.24%
1936 $80.35 1.46%
1937 $83.24 3.60%
1938 $81.50 -2.08%
1939 $80.35 -1.42%
1940 $80.92 0.72%
1941 $84.97 5.00%
1942 $94.22 10.88%
1943 $100.00 6.13%
1944 $101.73 1.73%
1945 $104.05 2.27%
1946 $112.72 8.33%
1947 $128.90 14.36%
1948 $139.31 8.07%
1949 $137.57 -1.24%
1950 $139.31 1.26%
1951 $150.29 7.88%
1952 $153.18 1.92%
1953 $154.34 0.75%
1954 $155.49 0.75%
1955 $154.91 -0.37%
1956 $157.23 1.49%
1957 $162.43 3.31%
1958 $167.05 2.85%
1959 $168.21 0.69%
1960 $171.10 1.72%
1961 $172.83 1.01%
1962 $174.57 1.00%
1963 $176.88 1.32%
1964 $179.19 1.31%
1965 $182.08 1.61%
1966 $187.28 2.86%
1967 $193.06 3.09%
1968 $201.16 4.19%
1969 $212.14 5.46%
1970 $224.28 5.72%
1971 $234.10 4.38%
1972 $241.62 3.21%
1973 $256.65 6.22%
1974 $284.97 11.04%
1975 $310.98 9.13%
1976 $328.90 5.76%
1977 $350.29 6.50%
1978 $376.88 7.59%
1979 $419.65 11.35%
1980 $476.30 13.50%
1981 $525.43 10.32%
1982 $557.80 6.16%
1983 $575.72 3.21%
1984 $600.58 4.32%
1985 $621.97 3.56%
1986 $633.53 1.86%
1987 $656.65 3.65%
1988 $683.82 4.14%
1989 $716.76 4.82%
1990 $755.49 5.40%
1991 $787.28 4.21%
1992 $810.98 3.01%
1993 $835.26 2.99%
1994 $856.65 2.56%
1995 $880.92 2.83%
1996 $906.94 2.95%
1997 $927.75 2.29%
1998 $942.20 1.56%
1999 $963.01 2.21%
2000 $995.38 3.36%
2001 $1,023.70 2.85%
2002 $1,039.88 1.58%
2003 $1,063.58 2.28%
2004 $1,091.91 2.66%
2005 $1,128.90 3.39%
2006 $1,165.32 3.23%
2007 $1,198.51 2.85%
2008 $1,244.53 3.84%
2009 $1,240.10 -0.36%
2010 $1,260.44 1.64%
2011 $1,300.23 3.16%
2012 $1,327.13 2.07%
2013 $1,346.57 1.46%
2014 $1,368.42 1.62%
2015 $1,370.04 0.12%
2016 $1,387.32 1.26%
2017 $1,414.95 1.99%
2018 $1,454.28 2.78%*
* Not final. See inflation summary for latest details.

News headlines from 1919

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

  • The German Farmer's Party, which would later develop into National Socialist Party, is formed.
  • The Bolshevik party re-establishes the idea of a five-member Politburo at the 8th Congress of the Russian Communist Party, making it the central body of political power in the Soviet Union. Its first members were Vladimir Lenin, Leon Trotsky, Joseph Stalin, Lev Kamenev and Nikolai Krestinsky.
  • The Turkish War of Independence begins after Mustafa Kemal Ataturk's lands at Samsun, on the Black Sea.
  • The Treaty of Versailles is signed ending World War I and establishing the League of Nations.

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: “Inflation Rate in 1919 | Inflation Calculator.” U.S. Official Inflation Data, Alioth Finance, 13 Jun. 2018, https://www.officialdata.org/inflation-rate-in-1919.


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