# \$2,500 in 1898 is worth \$77,005.27 in 2019

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👉 You may be interested in \$2,500 in 1898 → 2020

## Value of \$2,500 from 1898 to 2019

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics consumer price index, prices in 2019 are 2,980.21% higher than average prices since 1898. The U.S. dollar experienced an average inflation rate of 2.87% per year during this period, causing the real value of a dollar to decrease.

In other words, \$2,500 in 1898 is equivalent in purchasing power to about \$77,005.27 in 2019, a difference of \$74,505.27 over 121 years.

The 1898 inflation rate was 0.00%. The inflation rate in 2019 was 1.76%. The 2019 inflation rate is higher compared to the average inflation rate of 0.84% per year between 2019 and 2020.

 Cumulative price change 2,980.21% Average inflation rate 2.87% Converted amount (\$2,500 base) \$77,005.27 Price difference (\$2,500 base) \$74,505.27 CPI in 1898 8.300 CPI in 2019 255.658 Inflation in 1898 0.00% Inflation in 2019 1.76%

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

## Buying power of \$2,500 in 1898

This chart shows a calculation of buying power equivalence for \$2,500 in 1898 (price index tracking began in 1635).

For example, if you started with \$2,500, you would need to end with \$77,005.27 in order to "adjust" for inflation (sometimes refered to as "beating inflation").

When \$2,500 is equivalent to \$77,005.27 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 1898 dollars, the chart below shows how \$2,500 is worth less over 121 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:

Dollar inflation: 1898-2019
Year Dollar Value Inflation Rate
1898 \$2,500.00 -
1899 \$2,500.00 0.00%
1900 \$2,530.12 1.20%
1901 \$2,560.24 1.19%
1902 \$2,590.36 1.18%
1903 \$2,650.60 2.33%
1904 \$2,680.72 1.14%
1905 \$2,650.60 -1.12%
1906 \$2,710.84 2.27%
1907 \$2,831.33 4.44%
1908 \$2,771.08 -2.13%
1909 \$2,740.96 -1.09%
1910 \$2,861.45 4.40%
1911 \$2,861.45 0.00%
1912 \$2,921.69 2.11%
1913 \$2,981.93 2.06%
1914 \$3,012.05 1.01%
1915 \$3,042.17 1.00%
1916 \$3,283.13 7.92%
1917 \$3,855.42 17.43%
1918 \$4,548.19 17.97%
1919 \$5,210.84 14.57%
1920 \$6,024.10 15.61%
1921 \$5,391.57 -10.50%
1922 \$5,060.24 -6.15%
1923 \$5,150.60 1.79%
1924 \$5,150.60 0.00%
1925 \$5,271.08 2.34%
1926 \$5,331.33 1.14%
1927 \$5,240.96 -1.69%
1928 \$5,150.60 -1.72%
1929 \$5,150.60 0.00%
1930 \$5,030.12 -2.34%
1931 \$4,578.31 -8.98%
1932 \$4,126.51 -9.87%
1933 \$3,915.66 -5.11%
1934 \$4,036.14 3.08%
1935 \$4,126.51 2.24%
1936 \$4,186.75 1.46%
1937 \$4,337.35 3.60%
1938 \$4,246.99 -2.08%
1939 \$4,186.75 -1.42%
1940 \$4,216.87 0.72%
1941 \$4,427.71 5.00%
1942 \$4,909.64 10.88%
1943 \$5,210.84 6.13%
1944 \$5,301.20 1.73%
1945 \$5,421.69 2.27%
1946 \$5,873.49 8.33%
1947 \$6,716.87 14.36%
1948 \$7,259.04 8.07%
1949 \$7,168.67 -1.24%
1950 \$7,259.04 1.26%
1951 \$7,831.33 7.88%
1952 \$7,981.93 1.92%
1953 \$8,042.17 0.75%
1954 \$8,102.41 0.75%
1955 \$8,072.29 -0.37%
1956 \$8,192.77 1.49%
1957 \$8,463.86 3.31%
1958 \$8,704.82 2.85%
1959 \$8,765.06 0.69%
1960 \$8,915.66 1.72%
1961 \$9,006.02 1.01%
1962 \$9,096.39 1.00%
1963 \$9,216.87 1.32%
1964 \$9,337.35 1.31%
1965 \$9,487.95 1.61%
1966 \$9,759.04 2.86%
1967 \$10,060.24 3.09%
1968 \$10,481.93 4.19%
1969 \$11,054.22 5.46%
1970 \$11,686.75 5.72%
1971 \$12,198.80 4.38%
1972 \$12,590.36 3.21%
1973 \$13,373.49 6.22%
1974 \$14,849.40 11.04%
1975 \$16,204.82 9.13%
1976 \$17,138.55 5.76%
1977 \$18,253.01 6.50%
1978 \$19,638.55 7.59%
1979 \$21,867.47 11.35%
1980 \$24,819.28 13.50%
1981 \$27,379.52 10.32%
1982 \$29,066.27 6.16%
1983 \$30,000.00 3.21%
1984 \$31,295.18 4.32%
1985 \$32,409.64 3.56%
1986 \$33,012.05 1.86%
1987 \$34,216.87 3.65%
1988 \$35,632.53 4.14%
1989 \$37,349.40 4.82%
1990 \$39,367.47 5.40%
1991 \$41,024.10 4.21%
1992 \$42,259.04 3.01%
1993 \$43,524.10 2.99%
1994 \$44,638.55 2.56%
1995 \$45,903.61 2.83%
1996 \$47,259.04 2.95%
1997 \$48,343.37 2.29%
1998 \$49,096.39 1.56%
1999 \$50,180.72 2.21%
2000 \$51,867.47 3.36%
2001 \$53,343.37 2.85%
2002 \$54,186.75 1.58%
2003 \$55,421.69 2.28%
2004 \$56,897.59 2.66%
2005 \$58,825.30 3.39%
2006 \$60,722.89 3.23%
2007 \$62,452.41 2.85%
2008 \$64,850.30 3.84%
2009 \$64,619.58 -0.36%
2010 \$65,679.52 1.64%
2011 \$67,752.71 3.16%
2012 \$69,154.82 2.07%
2013 \$70,167.77 1.46%
2014 \$71,306.02 1.62%
2015 \$71,390.66 0.12%
2016 \$72,291.27 1.26%
2017 \$73,831.33 2.13%
2018 \$75,671.69 2.49%
2019 \$77,005.27 1.76%
2020 \$77,649.70 0.84%*
* Compared to previous annual rate. Not final. See inflation summary for latest 12-month trailing value.
Click to show 115 more rows

This conversion table shows various other 1898 amounts in 2019 dollars, based on the 2,980.21% change in prices:

Conversion Table: Value of a dollar in 2019
Initial value Equivalent value
\$1 dollar in 1898 \$30.80 dollars in 2019
\$5 dollars in 1898 \$154.01 dollars in 2019
\$10 dollars in 1898 \$308.02 dollars in 2019
\$50 dollars in 1898 \$1,540.11 dollars in 2019
\$100 dollars in 1898 \$3,080.21 dollars in 2019
\$500 dollars in 1898 \$15,401.05 dollars in 2019
\$1,000 dollars in 1898 \$30,802.11 dollars in 2019
\$5,000 dollars in 1898 \$154,010.54 dollars in 2019
\$10,000 dollars in 1898 \$308,021.08 dollars in 2019
\$50,000 dollars in 1898 \$1,540,105.42 dollars in 2019
\$100,000 dollars in 1898 \$3,080,210.84 dollars in 2019
\$500,000 dollars in 1898 \$15,401,054.22 dollars in 2019
\$1,000,000 dollars in 1898 \$30,802,108.43 dollars in 2019

## Inflation by Country

Inflation can also vary widely by country. For comparison, in the UK £2,500.00 in 1898 would be equivalent to £322,247.71 in 2019, an absolute change of £319,747.71 and a cumulative change of 12,789.91%.

Compare these numbers to the US's overall absolute change of \$74,505.27 and total percent change of 2,980.21%.

## 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 1898 and 2019.

Compare these values to the overall average of 2.87% per year:

Category Avg Inflation (%) Total Inflation (%) \$2,500 in 1898 → 2019
Food and beverages 3.92 10,347.98 261,199.44
Housing 4.23 14,995.70 377,392.45
Apparel 2.02 1,023.74 28,093.38
Transportation 3.26 4,746.86 121,171.62
Medical care 5.14 42,717.47 1,070,436.87
Recreation 1.10 274.07 9,351.66
Education and communication 1.85 818.15 22,953.87
Other goods and services 5.04 38,080.42 954,510.42

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 1898. This table and charts use the earliest available data for each category.

## How to Calculate Inflation Rate for \$2,500, 1898 to 2019

Our calculations use the following inflation rate formula to calculate the change in value between 1898 and 2019:

CPI in 2019 CPI in 1898
×
1898 USD value
=
2019 USD value

Then plug in historical CPI values. The U.S. CPI was 8.3 in the year 1898 and 255.6575 in 2019:

255.65758.3
×
\$2,500
=
\$77,005.27

\$2,500 in 1898 has the same "purchasing power" or "buying power" as \$77,005.27 in 2019.

To get the total inflation rate for the 121 years between 1898 and 2019, we use the following formula:

CPI in 2019 - CPI in 1898CPI in 1898
×
100
=
Cumulative inflation rate (121 years)

Plugging in the values to this equation, we get:

255.6575 - 8.38.3
×
100
=
2,980%

## Comparison to S&P 500 Index

The average inflation rate of 2.87% has a compounding effect between 1898 and 2019. As noted above, this yearly inflation rate compounds to produce an overall price difference of 2,980.21% over 121 years.

To help put this inflation into perspective, if we had invested \$2,500 in the S&P 500 index in 1898, our investment would be nominally worth approximately \$245,282,923.97 in 2019. This is a return on investment of 9,811,216.96%, with an absolute return of \$245,280,423.97 on top of the original \$2,500.

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 96.75% of returns (\$237,319,737.80) during this period. This means the inflation-adjusted real return of our \$2,500 investment is \$7,960,686.17. You may also want to account for capital gains tax, which would take your real return down to around \$6,766,583 for most people.

Investment in S&P 500 Index, 1898-2019
Original Amount Final Amount Change
Nominal \$2,500 \$245,282,923.97 9,811,216.96%
Real
\$2,500 \$7,963,186.17 318,427.45%

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 1898 to latest available data for 2019 using average monthly close price.

For more details on the S&P 500 between 1898 and 2019, see the stock market returns calculator.

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

• Anglo-Egyptian forces defeat the Sudanese army in the Battle of Atbara River
• Spanish-American War begins between U.S. and Spain after rising tensions and U.S. blockade of Cuba.
• The diesel internal combustion engine is patented by Rudolf Diesel.
• Radium is discovered by scientists Pierre and Marie Curie.

## 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: “\$2,500 in 1898 → 2019 | Inflation Calculator.” Official Inflation Data, Alioth Finance, 6 Aug. 2020, https://www.officialdata.org/1898-dollars-in-2019?amount=2500.

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.