U.S. inflation rate in 1937: 3.60%

Inflation Calculator

$

Inflation since 1937 and its effect on dollar value

The consumer price index (CPI) in 1937 was 14.4. It was 13.9 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 3.59% per year. Prices in 2018 are 1647.2% higher than prices in 1937.

In other words, $100 in 1937 is equivalent in purchasing power to $1,747.15 in 2018, a difference of $1,647.15 over 81 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 1937 to 2018
Cumulative price change 1647.15%
Average inflation rate 3.59%
Converted amount ($100 base) $1,747.15
Price difference ($100 base) $1,647.15
CPI in 1937 14.4
CPI in 2018 251.59


U.S. inflation from 1913 to 2018


Inflation rates for specific categories

Indoor plants and flowers · Medical care · Housing · More

Inflation-adjusted measures

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

How to calculate the inflation rate for $100 since 1937

This inflation calculator uses the following inflation rate formula:

CPI in 2018 / CPI in 1937 * 1937 USD value = 2018 USD value

Then plug in historical CPI values. The U.S. CPI was 14.4 in the year 1937 and 251.59 in 2018:

251.59 / 14.4 * $100 = $1,747.15

$100 in 1937 has the same "purchasing power" or "buying power" as $1,747.15 in 2018.


Here are calculations of buying power over time for $100 in 1937 (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
1937 $100.00 3.60%
1938 $97.92 -2.08%
1939 $96.53 -1.42%
1940 $97.22 0.72%
1941 $102.08 5.00%
1942 $113.19 10.88%
1943 $120.14 6.13%
1944 $122.22 1.73%
1945 $125.00 2.27%
1946 $135.42 8.33%
1947 $154.86 14.36%
1948 $167.36 8.07%
1949 $165.28 -1.24%
1950 $167.36 1.26%
1951 $180.56 7.88%
1952 $184.03 1.92%
1953 $185.42 0.75%
1954 $186.81 0.75%
1955 $186.11 -0.37%
1956 $188.89 1.49%
1957 $195.14 3.31%
1958 $200.69 2.85%
1959 $202.08 0.69%
1960 $205.56 1.72%
1961 $207.64 1.01%
1962 $209.72 1.00%
1963 $212.50 1.32%
1964 $215.28 1.31%
1965 $218.75 1.61%
1966 $225.00 2.86%
1967 $231.94 3.09%
1968 $241.67 4.19%
1969 $254.86 5.46%
1970 $269.44 5.72%
1971 $281.25 4.38%
1972 $290.28 3.21%
1973 $308.33 6.22%
1974 $342.36 11.04%
1975 $373.61 9.13%
1976 $395.14 5.76%
1977 $420.83 6.50%
1978 $452.78 7.59%
1979 $504.17 11.35%
1980 $572.22 13.50%
1981 $631.25 10.32%
1982 $670.14 6.16%
1983 $691.67 3.21%
1984 $721.53 4.32%
1985 $747.22 3.56%
1986 $761.11 1.86%
1987 $788.89 3.65%
1988 $821.53 4.14%
1989 $861.11 4.82%
1990 $907.64 5.40%
1991 $945.83 4.21%
1992 $974.31 3.01%
1993 $1,003.47 2.99%
1994 $1,029.17 2.56%
1995 $1,058.33 2.83%
1996 $1,089.58 2.95%
1997 $1,114.58 2.29%
1998 $1,131.94 1.56%
1999 $1,156.94 2.21%
2000 $1,195.83 3.36%
2001 $1,229.86 2.85%
2002 $1,249.31 1.58%
2003 $1,277.78 2.28%
2004 $1,311.81 2.66%
2005 $1,356.25 3.39%
2006 $1,400.00 3.23%
2007 $1,439.88 2.85%
2008 $1,495.16 3.84%
2009 $1,489.84 -0.36%
2010 $1,514.28 1.64%
2011 $1,562.08 3.16%
2012 $1,594.40 2.07%
2013 $1,617.76 1.46%
2014 $1,644.00 1.62%
2015 $1,645.95 0.12%
2016 $1,666.72 1.26%
2017 $1,699.90 1.99%
2018 $1,747.15 2.78%*
* Not final. See inflation summary for latest details.

News headlines from 1937

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

  • The Second Sino-Japanese War starts when Japanese and Chinese troops clash at the Marco Polo Bridge.
  • 193,000 Russians are executed by order of the Politburo's Operative Order 00447.
  • Adolf Hitler and his military leaders hold a secret meeting where he reveals his plan to go to war.

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 1937 | Inflation Calculator.” U.S. Official Inflation Data, Alioth Finance, 13 Jun. 2018, https://www.officialdata.org/inflation-rate-in-1937.


» Read more about inflation.