According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics consumer price index, the dollar experienced an average inflation rate of 2.33% per year. Prices in 2018 are 90.5% higher than prices in 1990.

In other words, $500 in the year 1990 is equivalent in purchasing power to $952.53 in 2018, a difference of $452.53 over 28 years.

The
current inflation rate
in 2018 is 1.72%^{1}. If this number holds, $500 today will be equivalent to $508.59 next year.

Cumulative price change | 90.51% |

Average inflation rate | 2.33% |

Price difference ($500 base) | $452.53 |

CPI in 1990 | 130.7 |

CPI in 2018 | 248.991 |

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 248.991 in 2018:

248.991 / 130.7 * $500 =

$500 in 1990 has the same "purchasing power" as $952.53 in 2018.

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.

Raw data for these calculations comes from the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Consumer Price Index (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: “$500 in 1990 → 2018 | Inflation Calculator.” FinanceRef Inflation Calculator, Alioth Finance, 22 Apr. 2018, http://www.in2013dollars.com/1990-dollars-in-2018?amount=500.