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# U.S. inflation rate in 1790: 4.55%

### Inflation in 1790 and Its Effect on Dollar Value

Purchasing power decreased by 4.55% in 1790 compared to 1789. On average, you would have to spend 4.55% more money in 1790 than in 1789 for the same item.

In other words, \$1 in 1789 is equivalent in purchasing power to about \$1.05 in 1790.

The 1789 inflation rate was -1.12%. The inflation rate in 1790 was 4.55%. The 1790 inflation rate is higher compared to the average inflation rate of 1.46% per year between 1790 and 2019.

Inflation rate is calculated by change in the consumer price index (CPI). The CPI in 1790 was 9.20. It was 8.80 in the previous year, 1789. The difference in CPI between the years is used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics to officially determine inflation.

 Average inflation rate 4.55% Converted amount (\$1 base) \$1.05 Price difference (\$1 base) \$0.05 CPI in 1789 8.800 CPI in 1790 9.200 Inflation in 1789 -1.12% Inflation in 1790 4.55%

### Inflation by Country

Inflation can also vary widely by country. For comparison, in the UK £1.00 in 1789 would be equivalent to £1.01 in 1790, an absolute change of £0.01 and a cumulative change of 1.35%.

Compare these numbers to the US's overall absolute change of \$0.05 and total percent change of 4.55%.

### Inflation by Spending Category

CPI is the weighted combination of many categories of spending that are tracked by the government. This chart shows the average rate of inflation for select CPI categories between 1789 and 1790.

Compare these values to the overall average of 4.55% per year:

Category Avg Inflation (%) Total Inflation (%) \$1 in 1789 → 1790
Food 0.00 0.00 1.00
Shelter 0.00 0.00 1.00
Energy 0.00 0.00 1.00
Apparel 0.00 0.00 1.00
New vehicles 0.00 0.00 1.00
Used cars and trucks 0.00 0.00 1.00
Transportation services 0.00 0.00 1.00
Medical care services 0.00 0.00 1.00
Medical care commodities 0.00 0.00 1.00

It's important to note that not all categories may be tracked since 1789. This table and visualization use the earliest available data for each category.

### How to Calculate Inflation Rate for \$1, 1789 to 1790

This inflation calculator uses the following inflation rate formula:

CPI in 1790CPI in 1789
×
1789 USD value
=
1790 USD value

Then plug in historical CPI values. The U.S. CPI was 8.8 in the year 1789 and 9.2 in 1790:

9.28.8
×
\$1
=
\$1.05

\$1 in 1789 has the same "purchasing power" or "buying power" as \$1.05 in 1790.

To get the total inflation rate for the 1 years between 1789 and 1790, we use the following formula:

CPI in 1790 - CPI in 1789CPI in 1789
×
100
=
Cumulative inflation rate (1 years)

Plugging in the values to this equation, we get:

9.2 - 8.88.8
×
100
=
5%

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

• George Washington is elected President and John Adams is elected Vice-President by the first US Electoral College.
• William Wilberforce proposes the abolition of slavery in the United Kingdom House of Commons.
• The fall of the Bastille Prison marks the beginning of the French Revolution

### Data Source & Citation

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 1790 | Inflation Calculator.” U.S. Official Inflation Data, Alioth Finance, 23 Oct. 2019, https://www.officialdata.org/inflation-rate-in-1790.