\$

# U.S. inflation rate in 1870: -3.68%

### Inflation in 1870 and Its Effect on Dollar Value

Purchasing power increased by 3.68% in 1870 compared to 1869. On average, you would have to spend 3.68% less money in 1870 than in 1869 for the same item. This is an example of deflation.

In other words, \$1 in 1869 is equivalent in purchasing power to about \$0.96 in 1870.

The 1869 inflation rate was -4.23%. The inflation rate in 1870 was -3.68%. The 1870 inflation rate is lower compared to the average inflation rate of 2.02% per year between 1870 and 2019.

Inflation rate is calculated by change in the consumer price index (CPI). The CPI in 1870 was 13.10. It was 13.60 in the previous year, 1869. The difference in CPI between the years is used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics to officially determine inflation. Because the 1870 CPI is less than 1869 CPI, negative inflation (also known as deflation) has occurred.

 Average inflation rate -3.68% Converted amount (\$1 base) \$0.96 Price difference (\$1 base) \$-0.04 CPI in 1869 13.600 CPI in 1870 13.100 Inflation in 1869 -4.23% Inflation in 1870 -3.68%

### Inflation by Country

Inflation can also vary widely by country. For comparison, in the UK £1.00 in 1869 would be equivalent to £1.00 in 1870, an absolute change of £0.00 and a cumulative change of 0.00%.

Compare these numbers to the US's overall absolute change of \$-0.04 and total percent change of -3.68%.

### 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 1869 and 1870.

Compare these values to the overall average of -3.68% per year:

Category Avg Inflation (%) Total Inflation (%) \$1 in 1869 → 1870
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 1869. This table and visualization use the earliest available data for each category.

### How to Calculate Inflation Rate for \$1, 1869 to 1870

This inflation calculator uses the following inflation rate formula:

CPI in 1870CPI in 1869
×
1869 USD value
=
1870 USD value

Then plug in historical CPI values. The U.S. CPI was 13.6 in the year 1869 and 13.1 in 1870:

13.113.6
×
\$1
=
\$0.96

\$1 in 1869 has the same "purchasing power" or "buying power" as \$0.96 in 1870.

To get the total inflation rate for the 1 years between 1869 and 1870, we use the following formula:

CPI in 1870 - CPI in 1869CPI in 1869
×
100
=
Cumulative inflation rate (1 years)

Plugging in the values to this equation, we get:

13.1 - 13.613.6
×
100
=
-4%

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

• Postal stamps showing scenes are issued for the first time in the U.S.
• Dmitri Mendeleev's presents the first periodic table of the elements to the Russian Chemical Society.
• Wall Street panics when Gould and Fisk attempt to corner gold, in an event known as Black Friday.

### 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 1870 | Inflation Calculator.” U.S. Official Inflation Data, Alioth Finance, 15 Oct. 2019, https://www.officialdata.org/inflation-rate-in-1870.