U.S. inflation rate in 1947: 14.36%

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Inflation in 1947 and Its Effect on Dollar Value

Purchasing power decreased by 14.36% in 1947 compared to the previous year, 1946. On average, you would have to spend 14.36% more money in 1947 than in 1946 for the same item.

In other words, $100 in 1946 is equivalent in purchasing power to $114.36 in 1947.

The 1946 inflation rate was 8.33%. The inflation rate in 1947 was 14.36%. The 1947 inflation rate is higher compared to the average inflation rate of 3.48% per year between 1947 and 2018.

Inflation rate is calculated by change in the consumer price index (CPI). The CPI in 1947 was 22.3. It was 19.5 in the previous year, 1946. The difference in CPI between the years is used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics to officially determine inflation.


Inflation from 1946 to 1947
Average inflation rate 14.36%
Converted amount ($100 base) $114.36
Price difference ($100 base) $14.36
CPI in 1946 19.5
CPI in 1947 22.3
Inflation in 1946 8.33%
Inflation in 1947 14.36%


U.S. Inflation since 1913
Annual Rate, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics CPI

Inflation by City

Inflation can vary widely by city, even within the United States. Here's how some cities fared in 1946 to 1947 (figures shown are purchasing power equivalents of $100):

Houston, Texas experienced the highest rate of inflation during the 1 years between 1946 and 1947 (17.55%).

New York experienced the lowest rate of inflation during the 1 years between 1946 and 1947 (12.01%).


Inflation by Country

Inflation can also vary widely by country. For comparison, in the UK £100.00 in 1946 would be equivalent to £107.04 in 1947, an absolute change of £7.04 and a cumulative change of 7.04%.

In Canada, CA$100.00 in 1946 would be equivalent to CA$114.43 in 1947, an absolute change of CA$14.43 and a cumulative change of 14.43%.

Compare these numbers to the US's overall absolute change of $14.36 and total percent change of 14.36%.


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 1946 and 1947.

Compare these values to the overall average of 14.36% per year:

Category Avg Inflation (%) Total Inflation (%) $100 in 1946 → 1947
Food 21.43 21.43 121.43
Shelter 0.00 0.00 100.00
Energy 0.00 0.00 100.00
Apparel 15.90 15.90 115.90
New vehicles 0.00 0.00 100.00
Used cars and trucks 0.00 0.00 100.00
Transportation services 0.00 0.00 100.00
Medical care services 8.59 8.59 108.59
Medical care commodities 0.00 0.00 100.00

It's important to note that not all categories may be tracked since 1946. This table and visualization use the earliest available data for each category.



How to Calculate Inflation Rate for $100, 1946 to 1947

This inflation calculator uses the following inflation rate formula:

CPI in 1947CPI in 1946
×
1946 USD value
=
1947 USD value

Then plug in historical CPI values. The U.S. CPI was 19.5 in the year 1946 and 22.3 in 1947:

22.319.5
×
$100
=
$114.36

$100 in 1946 has the same "purchasing power" or "buying power" as $114.36 in 1947.

To get the total inflation rate for the 1 years between 1946 and 1947, we use the following formula:

CPI in 1947 - CPI in 1946CPI in 1946
×
100
=
Cumulative inflation rate (1 years)

Plugging in the values to this equation, we get:

22.3 - 19.519.5
×
100
=
14%

Comparison to S&P 500 Index

To help put this inflation into perspective, if you had invested $100 in the S&P 500 index in 1946, your investment would be worth approximately $90.20 in 1947. This is a change of -9.80%.

This means the nominal return on a $100 investment is $-9.80, but inflation would eat into your real returns.

Inflation would account for 12.56% of your returns ($-1.23), for an inflation-adjusted real return of about $-8.57.


News headlines from 1946

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

  • The United Nations General Assembly meets for the first time in London.
  • President Harry Truman sets up the Central Intelligence Agency or CIA.
  • The US State Department releases the Acheson-Lilenthal Report outlining a plan for how the US can limit nuclear power internationally, marking the beginning of Cold War.
  • Twenty-two Nazi leaders found guilty of war crimes during the Nuremburg trials.

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 1947 | Inflation Calculator.” U.S. Official Inflation Data, Alioth Finance, 15 Oct. 2018, https://www.officialdata.org/inflation-rate-in-1947.

in2013dollars.com is a reference website maintained by the Official Data Foundation.


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