$1 in 1848 is worth $1.01 in 1848

Value of $1 from 1850 to 1848

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics consumer price index, prices in 1848 are 1.28% higher than average prices since 1850. The U.S. dollar experienced an average deflation rate of -0.63% per year during this period, causing the real value of a dollar to increase.

In other words, $1 in 1850 is equivalent in purchasing power to about $1.01 in 1848, a difference of $0.01 over 2 years.

The 1848 inflation rate was -3.66%. The inflation rate in 1850 was 1.30%. The 1850 inflation rate is lower compared to the average inflation rate of 2.08% per year between 1850 and 2020.


Inflation from 1850 to 1848
Cumulative price change 1.28%
Average inflation rate -0.63%
Converted amount ($1 base) $1.01
Price difference ($1 base) $0.01
CPI in 1850 7.800
CPI in 1848 7.900
Inflation in 1848 -3.66%
Inflation in 1850 1.30%

USD Inflation since 1635
Annual Rate, the Bureau of Labor Statistics CPI
Download

Buying power of $1 in 1848

This chart shows a calculation of buying power equivalence for $1 in 1848 (price index tracking began in 1635).

For example, if you started with $1, you would need to end with $1.01 in order to "adjust" for inflation (sometimes refered to as "beating inflation").

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, each of these USD amounts below is equal in terms of what it could buy at the time:

Dollar inflation: 1848-1850
Year Dollar Value Inflation Rate
1848 $1.00 -3.66%
1849 $0.97 -2.53%
1850 $0.99 1.30%
1851 $0.97 -1.28%
1852 $0.97 0.00%
1853 $0.97 0.00%
1854 $1.06 9.09%
1855 $1.10 3.57%
1856 $1.08 -2.30%
1857 $1.10 2.35%
1858 $1.04 -5.75%
1859 $1.05 1.22%
1860 $1.05 0.00%
1861 $1.11 6.02%
1862 $1.28 14.77%
1863 $1.59 24.75%
1864 $1.99 24.60%
1865 $2.06 3.82%
1866 $2.01 -2.45%
1867 $1.87 -6.92%
1868 $1.80 -4.05%
1869 $1.72 -4.23%
1870 $1.66 -3.68%
1871 $1.54 -6.87%
1872 $1.54 0.00%
1873 $1.52 -1.64%
1874 $1.44 -5.00%
1875 $1.39 -3.51%
1876 $1.35 -2.73%
1877 $1.33 -1.87%
1878 $1.27 -4.76%
1879 $1.27 0.00%
1880 $1.29 2.00%
1881 $1.29 0.00%
1882 $1.29 0.00%
1883 $1.28 -0.98%
1884 $1.24 -2.97%
1885 $1.23 -1.02%
1886 $1.19 -3.09%
1887 $1.20 1.06%
1888 $1.20 0.00%
1889 $1.16 -3.16%
1890 $1.15 -1.09%
1891 $1.15 0.00%
1892 $1.15 0.00%
1893 $1.14 -1.10%
1894 $1.09 -4.44%
1895 $1.06 -2.33%
1896 $1.06 0.00%
1897 $1.05 -1.19%
1898 $1.05 0.00%
1899 $1.05 0.00%
1900 $1.06 1.20%
1901 $1.08 1.19%
1902 $1.09 1.18%
1903 $1.11 2.33%
1904 $1.13 1.14%
1905 $1.11 -1.12%
1906 $1.14 2.27%
1907 $1.19 4.44%
1908 $1.16 -2.13%
1909 $1.15 -1.09%
1910 $1.20 4.40%
1911 $1.20 0.00%
1912 $1.23 2.11%
1913 $1.25 2.06%
1914 $1.27 1.01%
1915 $1.28 1.00%
1916 $1.38 7.92%
1917 $1.62 17.43%
1918 $1.91 17.97%
1919 $2.19 14.57%
1920 $2.53 15.61%
1921 $2.27 -10.50%
1922 $2.13 -6.15%
1923 $2.16 1.79%
1924 $2.16 0.00%
1925 $2.22 2.34%
1926 $2.24 1.14%
1927 $2.20 -1.69%
1928 $2.16 -1.72%
1929 $2.16 0.00%
1930 $2.11 -2.34%
1931 $1.92 -8.98%
1932 $1.73 -9.87%
1933 $1.65 -5.11%
1934 $1.70 3.08%
1935 $1.73 2.24%
1936 $1.76 1.46%
1937 $1.82 3.60%
1938 $1.78 -2.08%
1939 $1.76 -1.42%
1940 $1.77 0.72%
1941 $1.86 5.00%
1942 $2.06 10.88%
1943 $2.19 6.13%
1944 $2.23 1.73%
1945 $2.28 2.27%
1946 $2.47 8.33%
1947 $2.82 14.36%
1948 $3.05 8.07%
1949 $3.01 -1.24%
1950 $3.05 1.26%
1951 $3.29 7.88%
1952 $3.35 1.92%
1953 $3.38 0.75%
1954 $3.41 0.75%
1955 $3.39 -0.37%
1956 $3.44 1.49%
1957 $3.56 3.31%
1958 $3.66 2.85%
1959 $3.68 0.69%
1960 $3.75 1.72%
1961 $3.78 1.01%
1962 $3.82 1.00%
1963 $3.87 1.32%
1964 $3.92 1.31%
1965 $3.99 1.61%
1966 $4.10 2.86%
1967 $4.23 3.09%
1968 $4.41 4.19%
1969 $4.65 5.46%
1970 $4.91 5.72%
1971 $5.13 4.38%
1972 $5.29 3.21%
1973 $5.62 6.22%
1974 $6.24 11.04%
1975 $6.81 9.13%
1976 $7.20 5.76%
1977 $7.67 6.50%
1978 $8.25 7.59%
1979 $9.19 11.35%
1980 $10.43 13.50%
1981 $11.51 10.32%
1982 $12.22 6.16%
1983 $12.61 3.21%
1984 $13.15 4.32%
1985 $13.62 3.56%
1986 $13.87 1.86%
1987 $14.38 3.65%
1988 $14.97 4.14%
1989 $15.70 4.82%
1990 $16.54 5.40%
1991 $17.24 4.21%
1992 $17.76 3.01%
1993 $18.29 2.99%
1994 $18.76 2.56%
1995 $19.29 2.83%
1996 $19.86 2.95%
1997 $20.32 2.29%
1998 $20.63 1.56%
1999 $21.09 2.21%
2000 $21.80 3.36%
2001 $22.42 2.85%
2002 $22.77 1.58%
2003 $23.29 2.28%
2004 $23.91 2.66%
2005 $24.72 3.39%
2006 $25.52 3.23%
2007 $26.25 2.85%
2008 $27.25 3.84%
2009 $27.16 -0.36%
2010 $27.60 1.64%
2011 $28.47 3.16%
2012 $29.06 2.07%
2013 $29.49 1.46%
2014 $29.97 1.62%
2015 $30.00 0.12%
2016 $30.38 1.26%
2017 $31.03 2.13%
2018 $31.80 2.49%
2019 $32.36 1.76%
2020 $32.45 0.29%*
* Compared to previous annual rate. Not final. See inflation summary for latest 12-month trailing value.

This conversion table shows various other 1848 amounts in 1850 dollars, based on the 1.28% change in prices:

Conversion Table: Value of a dollar in 1850
Initial value Equivalent value
$1 dollar in 1848 $0.99 dollars in 1850
$5 dollars in 1848 $4.94 dollars in 1850
$10 dollars in 1848 $9.87 dollars in 1850
$50 dollars in 1848 $49.37 dollars in 1850
$100 dollars in 1848 $98.73 dollars in 1850
$500 dollars in 1848 $493.67 dollars in 1850
$1,000 dollars in 1848 $987.34 dollars in 1850
$5,000 dollars in 1848 $4,936.71 dollars in 1850
$10,000 dollars in 1848 $9,873.42 dollars in 1850
$50,000 dollars in 1848 $49,367.09 dollars in 1850
$100,000 dollars in 1848 $98,734.18 dollars in 1850
$500,000 dollars in 1848 $493,670.89 dollars in 1850
$1,000,000 dollars in 1848 $987,341.77 dollars in 1850

Inflation by Country

Inflation can also vary widely by country. For comparison, in the UK £1.00 in 1850 would be equivalent to £1.13 in 1848, an absolute change of £0.13 and a cumulative change of 13.10%.

Compare these numbers to the US's overall absolute change of $0.01 and total percent change of 1.28%.


Inflation by Spending Category

CPI is the weighted combination of many categories of spending that are tracked by the government. Breaking down these categories helps explain the main drivers behind price changes. This chart shows the average rate of inflation for select CPI categories between 1850 and 1848.

Compare these values to the overall average of -0.63% per year:

Category Avg Inflation (%) Total Inflation (%) $1 in 1848 → 1850
Food and beverages 0.00 0.00 1.00
Housing 0.00 0.00 1.00
Apparel 0.00 0.00 1.00
Transportation 0.00 0.00 1.00
Medical care 0.00 0.00 1.00
Recreation 0.00 0.00 1.00
Education and communication 0.00 0.00 1.00
Other goods and services 0.00 0.00 1.00

The graph below compares inflation in categories of goods over time. Click on a category such as "Food" to toggle it on or off:

For all these visualizations, it's important to note that not all categories may have been tracked since 1850. This table and charts use the earliest available data for each category.



How to Calculate Inflation Rate for $1, 1848 to 1850

Our calculations use the following inflation rate formula to calculate the change in value between 1848 and 1850:

CPI in 1848 CPI in 1850
×
1850 USD value
=
1848 USD value

Then plug in historical CPI values. The U.S. CPI was 7.8 in the year 1850 and 7.9 in 1848:

7.97.8
×
$1
=
$1.01

$1 in 1850 has the same "purchasing power" or "buying power" as $1.01 in 1848.

To get the total inflation rate for the 2 years between 1848 and 1850, we use the following formula:

CPI in 1848 - CPI in 1850CPI in 1850
×
100
=
Cumulative inflation rate (2 years)

Plugging in the values to this equation, we get:

7.9 - 7.87.8
×
100
=
1%

News headlines from 1848

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

  • The first National Women's Rights Convention takes place in Wocester, Massachusetts.
  • The California Exchange is opened.
  • Britain blockades Piraeus, a Greek port.
  • The HMS Investigator sets sail from Woolwich, England, becoming the first ship to explore the Northwest Passage.

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: “$1 in 1850 → 1848 | Inflation Calculator.” Official Inflation Data, Alioth Finance, 31 May. 2020, https://www.officialdata.org/1850-dollars-in-1848?amount=1.

Special thanks to QuickChart for providing downloadable chart images.

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


Ian Webster

About the author

Ian Webster is an engineer and data expert based in San Mateo, California. He has worked for Google, NASA, and consulted for governments around the world on data pipelines and data analysis. Disappointed by the lack of clear resources on the impacts of inflation on economic indicators, Ian believes this website serves as a valuable public tool. Ian earned his degree in Computer Science from Dartmouth College.

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» Read more about inflation and investment.

Inflation from 1850 to 1848
Cumulative price change 1.28%
Average inflation rate -0.63%
Converted amount ($1 base) $1.01
Price difference ($1 base) $0.01
CPI in 1850 7.800
CPI in 1848 7.900
Inflation in 1848 -3.66%
Inflation in 1850 1.30%