£1 in 1970 is worth £1.48 in 1974

Value of £1 from 1970 to 1974

According to the Office for National Statistics composite price index, prices in 1974 are 48.43% higher than average prices since 1970. The British pound experienced an average inflation rate of 10.38% per year during this period, causing the real value of a pound to decrease.

In other words, £1 in 1970 is equivalent in purchasing power to about £1.48 in 1974, a difference of £0.48 over 4 years.

The 1970 inflation rate was 6.40%. The inflation rate in 1974 was 16.04%. The 1974 inflation rate is higher compared to the average inflation rate of 5.24% per year between 1974 and 2020.


Inflation from 1970 to 1974
Cumulative price change 48.43%
Average inflation rate 10.38%
Converted amount (£1 base) £1.48
Price difference (£1 base) £0.48
CPI in 1970 73.100
CPI in 1974 108.500
Inflation in 1970 6.40%
Inflation in 1974 16.04%

GBP Inflation since 1750
Annual Rate, the Office for National Statistics CPI
Download

Buying power of £1 in 1970

This chart shows a calculation of buying power equivalence for £1 in 1970 (price index tracking began in 1750).

For example, if you started with £1, you would need to end with £1.48 in order to "adjust" for inflation (sometimes refered to as "beating inflation").

When £1 is equivalent to £1.48 over time, that means that the "real value" of a single U.K. pound decreases over time. In other words, a pound will pay for fewer items at the store.

This effect explains how inflation erodes the value of a pound over time. By calculating the value in 1970 dollars, the chart below shows how £1 is worth less over 4 years.

According to the Office for National Statistics, each of these GBP amounts below is equal in terms of what it could buy at the time:

Pound inflation: 1970-1974
Year Pound Value Inflation Rate
1970 £1.00 6.40%
1971 £1.09 9.44%
1972 £1.17 7.13%
1973 £1.28 9.10%
1974 £1.48 16.04%
1975 £1.84 24.24%
1976 £2.15 16.54%
1977 £2.49 15.85%
1978 £2.70 8.30%
1979 £3.06 13.39%
1980 £3.61 17.99%
1981 £4.04 11.87%
1982 £4.38 8.61%
1983 £4.58 4.59%
1984 £4.81 4.98%
1985 £5.11 6.08%
1986 £5.28 3.40%
1987 £5.50 4.17%
1988 £5.77 4.90%
1989 £6.22 7.78%
1990 £6.81 9.46%
1991 £7.21 5.87%
1992 £7.47 3.74%
1993 £7.59 1.59%
1994 £7.78 2.41%
1995 £8.05 3.47%
1996 £8.24 2.41%
1997 £8.50 3.14%
1998 £8.79 3.43%
1999 £8.93 1.54%
2000 £9.19 2.96%
2001 £9.35 1.77%
2002 £9.51 1.67%
2003 £9.78 2.89%
2004 £10.08 2.98%
2005 £10.36 2.82%
2006 £10.69 3.20%
2007 £11.15 4.29%
2008 £11.59 3.99%
2009 £11.53 -0.53%
2010 £12.06 4.61%
2011 £12.69 5.20%
2012 £13.10 3.21%
2013 £13.50 3.04%
2014 £13.82 2.36%
2015 £13.95 0.99%
2016 £14.20 1.74%
2017 £14.70 3.58%
2018 £15.07 2.48%
2019 £15.34 1.80%
2020 £15.57 1.50%*
* Compared to previous annual rate. Not final. See inflation summary for latest 12-month trailing value.

This conversion table shows various other 1970 amounts in 1974 pounds, based on the 48.43% change in prices:

Conversion Table: Value of a pound in 1974
Initial value Equivalent value
£1 pound in 1970 £1.48 pounds in 1974
£5 pounds in 1970 £7.42 pounds in 1974
£10 pounds in 1970 £14.84 pounds in 1974
£50 pounds in 1970 £74.21 pounds in 1974
£100 pounds in 1970 £148.43 pounds in 1974
£500 pounds in 1970 £742.13 pounds in 1974
£1,000 pounds in 1970 £1,484.27 pounds in 1974
£5,000 pounds in 1970 £7,421.34 pounds in 1974
£10,000 pounds in 1970 £14,842.68 pounds in 1974
£50,000 pounds in 1970 £74,213.41 pounds in 1974
£100,000 pounds in 1970 £148,426.81 pounds in 1974
£500,000 pounds in 1970 £742,134.06 pounds in 1974
£1,000,000 pounds in 1970 £1,484,268.13 pounds in 1974

How to Calculate Inflation Rate for £1, 1970 to 1974

Our calculations use the following inflation rate formula to calculate the change in value between 1970 and 1974:

CPI in 1974 CPI in 1970
×
1970 GBP value
=
1974 GBP value

Then plug in historical CPI values. The U.K. CPI was 73.1 in the year 1970 and 108.5 in 1974:

108.573.1
×
£1
=
£1.48

£1 in 1970 has the same "purchasing power" or "buying power" as £1.48 in 1974.

To get the total inflation rate for the 4 years between 1970 and 1974, we use the following formula:

CPI in 1974 - CPI in 1970CPI in 1970
×
100
=
Cumulative inflation rate (4 years)

Plugging in the values to this equation, we get:

108.5 - 73.173.1
×
100
=
48%

News headlines from 1970

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

  • January 1st, 1970 established as Epoch time for UNIX systems.
  • Rhodesia declares independence and sets up a republican government.
  • Aswan Dam opens in Egypt to prevent flooding of the Nile River.
  • A Palestinian terrorist organization hijacks three aircrafts in an incident that is later known as Black September.

Data Source & Citation

Raw data for these calculations comes from the composite price index published by the UK Office for National Statistics (ONS). A composite index is created by combining price data from several different published sources, both official and unofficial. The Consumer Price Index, normally used to compute inflation, has only been tracked since 1988. All inflation calculations after 1988 use the Office for National Statistics' Consumer Price Index, except for 2017, which is based on The Bank of England's forecast.

You may use the following MLA citation for this page: “£1 in 1970 → 1974 | UK Inflation Calculator.” Official Inflation Data, Alioth Finance, 6 Aug. 2020, https://www.officialdata.org/uk/inflation/1970?amount=1&endYear=1974.

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.


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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Inflation from 1970 to 1974
Cumulative price change 48.43%
Average inflation rate 10.38%
Converted amount (£1 base) £1.48
Price difference (£1 base) £0.48
CPI in 1970 73.100
CPI in 1974 108.500
Inflation in 1970 6.40%
Inflation in 1974 16.04%