# \$100 in 1945 is worth \$1,316.76 in 2015

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## Value of \$100 from 1945 to 2015

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics consumer price index, prices in 2015 are 1,216.76% higher than average prices since 1945. The U.S. dollar experienced an average inflation rate of 3.75% per year during this period, causing the real value of a dollar to decrease.

In other words, \$100 in 1945 is equivalent in purchasing power to about \$1,316.76 in 2015, a difference of \$1,216.76 over 70 years.

The 1945 inflation rate was 2.27%. The inflation rate in 2015 was 0.12%. The 2015 inflation rate is lower compared to the average inflation rate of 1.58% per year between 2015 and 2020.

 Cumulative price change 1,216.76% Average inflation rate 3.75% Converted amount (\$100 base) \$1,316.76 Price difference (\$100 base) \$1,216.76 CPI in 1945 18.000 CPI in 2015 237.017 Inflation in 1945 2.27% Inflation in 2015 0.12%

USD Inflation since 1913
Annual Rate, the Bureau of Labor Statistics CPI

## Buying power of \$100 in 1945

This chart shows a calculation of buying power equivalence for \$100 in 1945 (price index tracking began in 1635).

For example, if you started with \$100, you would need to end with \$1,316.76 in order to "adjust" for inflation (sometimes refered to as "beating inflation").

When \$100 is equivalent to \$1,316.76 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 1945 dollars, the chart below shows how \$100 is worth less over 70 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: 1945-2015
Year Dollar Value Inflation Rate
1945 \$100.00 2.27%
1946 \$108.33 8.33%
1947 \$123.89 14.36%
1948 \$133.89 8.07%
1949 \$132.22 -1.24%
1950 \$133.89 1.26%
1951 \$144.44 7.88%
1952 \$147.22 1.92%
1953 \$148.33 0.75%
1954 \$149.44 0.75%
1955 \$148.89 -0.37%
1956 \$151.11 1.49%
1957 \$156.11 3.31%
1958 \$160.56 2.85%
1959 \$161.67 0.69%
1960 \$164.44 1.72%
1961 \$166.11 1.01%
1962 \$167.78 1.00%
1963 \$170.00 1.32%
1964 \$172.22 1.31%
1965 \$175.00 1.61%
1966 \$180.00 2.86%
1967 \$185.56 3.09%
1968 \$193.33 4.19%
1969 \$203.89 5.46%
1970 \$215.56 5.72%
1971 \$225.00 4.38%
1972 \$232.22 3.21%
1973 \$246.67 6.22%
1974 \$273.89 11.04%
1975 \$298.89 9.13%
1976 \$316.11 5.76%
1977 \$336.67 6.50%
1978 \$362.22 7.59%
1979 \$403.33 11.35%
1980 \$457.78 13.50%
1981 \$505.00 10.32%
1982 \$536.11 6.16%
1983 \$553.33 3.21%
1984 \$577.22 4.32%
1985 \$597.78 3.56%
1986 \$608.89 1.86%
1987 \$631.11 3.65%
1988 \$657.22 4.14%
1989 \$688.89 4.82%
1990 \$726.11 5.40%
1991 \$756.67 4.21%
1992 \$779.44 3.01%
1993 \$802.78 2.99%
1994 \$823.33 2.56%
1995 \$846.67 2.83%
1996 \$871.67 2.95%
1997 \$891.67 2.29%
1998 \$905.56 1.56%
1999 \$925.56 2.21%
2000 \$956.67 3.36%
2001 \$983.89 2.85%
2002 \$999.44 1.58%
2003 \$1,022.22 2.28%
2004 \$1,049.44 2.66%
2005 \$1,085.00 3.39%
2006 \$1,120.00 3.23%
2007 \$1,151.90 2.85%
2008 \$1,196.13 3.84%
2009 \$1,191.87 -0.36%
2010 \$1,211.42 1.64%
2011 \$1,249.66 3.16%
2012 \$1,275.52 2.07%
2013 \$1,294.21 1.46%
2014 \$1,315.20 1.62%
2015 \$1,316.76 0.12%
2016 \$1,333.37 1.26%
2017 \$1,361.78 2.13%
2018 \$1,395.72 2.49%
2019 \$1,420.32 1.76%
2020 \$1,424.38 0.29%*
* Compared to previous annual rate. Not final. See inflation summary for latest 12-month trailing value.
Click to show 64 more rows

This conversion table shows various other 1945 amounts in 2015 dollars, based on the 1,216.76% change in prices:

Conversion Table: Value of a dollar in 2015
Initial value Equivalent value
\$1 dollar in 1945 \$13.17 dollars in 2015
\$5 dollars in 1945 \$65.84 dollars in 2015
\$10 dollars in 1945 \$131.68 dollars in 2015
\$50 dollars in 1945 \$658.38 dollars in 2015
\$100 dollars in 1945 \$1,316.76 dollars in 2015
\$500 dollars in 1945 \$6,583.81 dollars in 2015
\$1,000 dollars in 1945 \$13,167.61 dollars in 2015
\$5,000 dollars in 1945 \$65,838.06 dollars in 2015
\$10,000 dollars in 1945 \$131,676.11 dollars in 2015
\$50,000 dollars in 1945 \$658,380.56 dollars in 2015
\$100,000 dollars in 1945 \$1,316,761.11 dollars in 2015
\$500,000 dollars in 1945 \$6,583,805.56 dollars in 2015
\$1,000,000 dollars in 1945 \$13,167,611.11 dollars in 2015

## Inflation by City

Inflation can vary widely by city, even within the United States. Here's how some cities fared in 1945 to 2015 (figures shown are purchasing power equivalents of \$100):

• San Francisco, California: 3.98% average rate, \$100 → \$1,535.05, cumulative change of 1,435.05%
• Seattle, Washington: 3.88% average rate, \$100 → \$1,438.78, cumulative change of 1,338.78%
• Boston, Massachusetts: 3.88% average rate, \$100 → \$1,432.98, cumulative change of 1,332.98%
• New York: 3.83% average rate, \$100 → \$1,384.11, cumulative change of 1,284.11%
• Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: 3.75% average rate, \$100 → \$1,315.94, cumulative change of 1,215.94%
• Chicago, Illinois: 3.74% average rate, \$100 → \$1,303.53, cumulative change of 1,203.53%
• Houston, Texas: 3.72% average rate, \$100 → \$1,288.05, cumulative change of 1,188.05%
• Atlanta, Georgia: 3.66% average rate, \$100 → \$1,239.22, cumulative change of 1,139.22%
• Detroit, Michigan: 3.61% average rate, \$100 → \$1,197.63, cumulative change of 1,097.63%

San Francisco, California experienced the highest rate of inflation during the 70 years between 1945 and 2015 (3.98%).

Detroit, Michigan experienced the lowest rate of inflation during the 70 years between 1945 and 2015 (3.61%).

Note that some locations showing 0% inflation may have not yet reported latest data.

## Inflation by Country

Inflation can also vary widely by country. For comparison, in the UK £100.00 in 1945 would be equivalent to £3,893.13 in 2015, an absolute change of £3,793.13 and a cumulative change of 3,793.13%.

In Canada, CA\$100.00 in 1945 would be equivalent to CA\$1,375.00 in 2015, an absolute change of CA\$1,275.00 and a cumulative change of 1,275.00%.

Compare these numbers to the US's overall absolute change of \$1,216.76 and total percent change of 1,216.76%.

## 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 1945 and 2015.

Compare these values to the overall average of 3.75% per year:

Category Avg Inflation (%) Total Inflation (%) \$100 in 1945 → 2015
Food and beverages 4.15 1,626.76 1,726.76
Housing 4.35 1,874.11 1,974.11
Apparel 2.01 301.65 401.65
Transportation 3.68 1,151.99 1,251.99
Medical care 5.28 3,556.48 3,656.48
Recreation 1.12 117.35 217.35
Education and communication 2.20 359.73 459.73
Other goods and services 5.28 3,571.64 3,671.64

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 1945. This table and charts use the earliest available data for each category.

## How to Calculate Inflation Rate for \$100, 1945 to 2015

Our calculations use the following inflation rate formula to calculate the change in value between 1945 and 2015:

CPI in 2015 CPI in 1945
×
1945 USD value
=
2015 USD value

Then plug in historical CPI values. The U.S. CPI was 18 in the year 1945 and 237.017 in 2015:

237.01718
×
\$100
=
\$1,316.76

\$100 in 1945 has the same "purchasing power" or "buying power" as \$1,316.76 in 2015.

To get the total inflation rate for the 70 years between 1945 and 2015, we use the following formula:

CPI in 2015 - CPI in 1945CPI in 1945
×
100
=
Cumulative inflation rate (70 years)

Plugging in the values to this equation, we get:

237.017 - 1818
×
100
=
1,217%

## Comparison to S&P 500 Index

The average inflation rate of 3.75% has a compounding effect between 1945 and 2015. As noted above, this yearly inflation rate compounds to produce an overall price difference of 1,216.76% over 70 years.

To help put this inflation into perspective, if we had invested \$100 in the S&P 500 index in 1945, our investment would be nominally worth approximately \$157,931.59 in 2015. This is a return on investment of 157,831.59%, with an absolute return of \$157,831.59 on top of the original \$100.

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 92.41% of returns (\$145,937.65) during this period. This means the inflation-adjusted real return of our \$100 investment is \$11,893.94. You may also want to account for capital gains tax, which would take your real return down to around \$10,110 for most people.

Investment in S&P 500 Index, 1945-2015
Original Amount Final Amount Change
Nominal \$100 \$157,931.59 157,831.59%
Real
\$100 \$11,993.94 11,893.94%

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 1945 to latest available data for 2015 using average monthly close price.

For more details on the S&P 500 between 1945 and 2015, see the stock market returns calculator.

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

• The USSR captures Budapest from Germany in a battle that kills 159,000 people.
• The US Fleet captures Iwo Jima.
• 1,500 US Navy ships bomb Okinawa: the operation is believed to be the largest of World War II
• Iwo Jima is occupied by America, costing 6,000 American lives and a further 18,000 Japanese lives.
• Buchenwald, the first Nazi concentration camp, is liberated.

## 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: “1945 dollars in 2015 | Inflation Calculator.” Official Inflation Data, Alioth Finance, 20 May. 2020, https://www.officialdata.org/1945-dollars-in-2015.