View $300 in 1891 → **2021**

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$300 in 1891 is equivalent in purchasing power to about $8,080.88 in 2017, an increase of $7,780.88 over 126 years. The dollar had an average inflation rate of 2.65% per year between 1891 and 2017, producing a cumulative price increase of 2,593.63%.

This means that prices in 2017 are 26.94 times higher than average prices since 1891, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics consumer price index.

The 1891 inflation rate was 0.00%. The inflation rate in 2017 was 2.13%. The 2017 inflation rate is lower compared to the average inflation rate of 2.78% per year between 2017 and 2021.

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Cumulative price change | 2,593.63% |

Average inflation rate | 2.65% |

Converted amount ($300 base) | $8,080.88 |

Price difference ($300 base) | $7,780.88 |

CPI in 1891 | 9.100 |

CPI in 2017 | 245.120 |

Inflation in 1891 | 0.00% |

Inflation in 2017 | 2.13% |

$300 in 1891 | $8,080.88 in 2017 |

This chart shows a calculation of buying power equivalence for $300 in 1891 (price index tracking began in 1635).

For example, if you started with $300, you would need to end with $8,080.88 in order to "adjust" for inflation (sometimes refered to as "beating inflation").

When $300 is equivalent to $8,080.88 over time, that means that the "real value" of a single U.S. dollar decreases over time. In other words, a dollar will pay for fewer items at the store.

This effect explains how inflation erodes the value of a dollar over time. By calculating the value in 1891 dollars, the chart below shows how $300 is worth less over 126 years.

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:

This conversion table shows various other 1891 amounts in 2017 dollars, based on the 2,593.63% change in prices:

Initial value | Equivalent value |
---|---|

$1 dollar in 1891 | $26.94 dollars in 2017 |

$5 dollars in 1891 | $134.68 dollars in 2017 |

$10 dollars in 1891 | $269.36 dollars in 2017 |

$50 dollars in 1891 | $1,346.81 dollars in 2017 |

$100 dollars in 1891 | $2,693.63 dollars in 2017 |

$500 dollars in 1891 | $13,468.13 dollars in 2017 |

$1,000 dollars in 1891 | $26,936.26 dollars in 2017 |

$5,000 dollars in 1891 | $134,681.32 dollars in 2017 |

$10,000 dollars in 1891 | $269,362.64 dollars in 2017 |

$50,000 dollars in 1891 | $1,346,813.19 dollars in 2017 |

$100,000 dollars in 1891 | $2,693,626.37 dollars in 2017 |

$500,000 dollars in 1891 | $13,468,131.87 dollars in 2017 |

$1,000,000 dollars in 1891 | $26,936,263.74 dollars in 2017 |

Inflation can also vary widely by country. For comparison, in the UK £300.00 in 1891 would be equivalent to £36,232.58 in 2017, an absolute change of £35,932.58 and a cumulative change of 11,977.53%.

Compare these numbers to the US's overall absolute change of $7,780.88 and total percent change of 2,593.63%.

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 1891 and 2017.

Compare these values to the overall average of 2.65% per year:

Category | Avg Inflation (%) | Total Inflation (%) | $300 in 1891 → 2017 |
---|---|---|---|

Food and beverages | 4.01 | 14,069.10 | 42,507.29 |

Housing | 4.29 | 19,730.65 | 59,491.94 |

Apparel | 2.07 | 1,223.42 | 3,970.25 |

Transportation | 3.29 | 5,793.07 | 17,679.20 |

Medical care | 4.80 | 36,511.71 | 109,835.12 |

Recreation | 1.11 | 303.65 | 1,210.96 |

Education and communication | 1.97 | 1,061.40 | 3,484.19 |

Other goods and services | 5.15 | 56,103.54 | 168,610.61 |

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 1891. This table and charts use the earliest available data for each category.

Our calculations use the following inflation rate formula to calculate the change in value between 1891 and 2017:

CPI in 2017
CPI in 1891

×

1891 USD value

=

2017 USD value

Then plug in historical CPI values. The U.S. CPI was 9.1 in the year 1891 and 245.12 in 2017:

245.129.1

×

$300

=

$300 in 1891 has the same "purchasing power" or "buying power" as $8,080.88 in 2017.

To get the total inflation rate for the 126 years between 1891 and 2017, we use the following formula:

CPI in 2017 - CPI in 1891CPI in 1891

×

100

=

Plugging in the values to this equation, we get:

245.12 - 9.19.1

×

100

=

The average inflation rate of 2.65% has a compounding effect between 1891 and 2017. As noted above, this yearly inflation rate compounds to produce an overall price difference of 2,593.63% over 126 years.

To help put this inflation into perspective, if we had invested $300 in the S&P 500 index in 1891, our investment would be * nominally* worth approximately $33,407,568.81 in 2017. This is a return on investment of 11,135,756.27%, with an absolute return of $33,407,268.81 on top of the original $300.

These numbers are not inflation adjusted, so they are considered *nominal*. In order to evaluate the *real* return on our investment, we must calculate the return with inflation taken into account.

The compounding effect of inflation would account for 96.29% of returns ($32,167,323.73) during this period. This means the inflation-adjusted * real* return of our $300 investment is $1,239,945.09. You may also want to account for capital gains tax, which would take your real return down to around $1,053,953 for most people.

Original Amount | Final Amount | Change | |
---|---|---|---|

Nominal |
$300 | $33,407,568.81 | 11,135,756.27% |

RealInflation Adjusted |
$300 | $1,240,245.09 | 413,315.03% |

Information displayed above may differ slightly from other S&P 500 calculators. Minor discrepancies can occur because we use the latest CPI data for inflation, annualized inflation numbers for previous years, and we compute S&P price and dividends from January of 1891 to latest available data for 2017 using average monthly close price.

For more details on the S&P 500 between 1891 and 2017, see the stock market returns calculator.

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

- Thomas Edison's prototype of a kinetoscope had its first public display to members of the National Federation of Women's Club.
- Eighteen students from Springfield, Massachusetts, played the first ever basketball game based on rules by James Naismith.
- John Abbott is named Canada's Prime Minister.

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: “$300 in 1891 → 2017 | Inflation Calculator.” Official Inflation Data, Alioth Finance, 25 Sep. 2021, https://www.officialdata.org/1891-dollars-in-2017?amount=300.

Special thanks to QuickChart for their chart image API, which is used for chart downloads.

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

Cumulative price change | 2,593.63% |

Average inflation rate | 2.65% |

Converted amount ($300 base) | $8,080.88 |

Price difference ($300 base) | $7,780.88 |

CPI in 1891 | 9.100 |

CPI in 2017 | 245.120 |

Inflation in 1891 | 0.00% |

Inflation in 2017 | 2.13% |

$300 in 1891 | $8,080.88 in 2017 |