According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics consumer price index, today's prices in 2020 are 2,923.22% higher than average prices since 1901. The U.S. dollar experienced an average inflation rate of 2.91% per year during this period, meaning the real value of a dollar decreased.

In other words, $1,000,000,000 in 1901 is equivalent in purchasing power to about $30,232,235,294.12 in 2020, a difference of $29,232,235,294.12 over 119 years.

The 1901 inflation rate was 1.19%. The current inflation rate (2019 to 2020) is now 2.29%^{1}. If this number holds, $1,000,000,000 today will be equivalent in buying power to $1,022,851,297.40 next year.
The current inflation rate page gives more detail on the latest official inflation rates.

Contents

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Cumulative price change | 2,923.22% |

Average inflation rate | 2.91% |

Converted amount ($1,000,000,000 base) | $30,232,235,294.12 |

Price difference ($1,000,000,000 base) | $29,232,235,294.12 |

CPI in 1901 | 8.500 |

CPI in 2020 | 256.974 |

Inflation in 1901 | 1.19% |

Inflation in 2020 | 2.29% |

This chart shows a calculation of buying power equivalence for $1,000,000,000 in 1901 (price index tracking began in 1635).

For example, if you started with $1,000,000,000, you would need to end with $30,232,235,294.12 in order to "adjust" for inflation (sometimes refered to as "beating inflation").

When $1,000,000,000 is equivalent to $30,232,235,294.12 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 1901 dollars, the chart below shows how $1,000,000,000 buys less over the past 119 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:

Inflation can also vary widely by country. For comparison, in the UK £1,000,000,000.00 in 1901 would be equivalent to £123,722,104,429.84 in 2020, an absolute change of £122,722,104,429.84 and a cumulative change of 12,272.21%.

Compare these numbers to the US's overall absolute change of $29,232,235,294.12 and total percent change of 2,923.22%.

CPI is the weighted combination of many categories of spending that are tracked by the government. This chart shows the average rate of inflation for select CPI categories between 1901 and 2020.

Compare these values to the overall average of 2.91% per year:

Category | Avg Inflation (%) | Total Inflation (%) | $1,000,000,000 in 1901 → 2020 |
---|---|---|---|

Food and beverages | 3.92 | 9,575.15 | 96,751,464,695.82 |

Housing | 4.23 | 13,794.41 | 138,944,073,090.11 |

Apparel | 2.02 | 979.69 | 10,796,865,332.29 |

Transportation | 3.26 | 4,445.71 | 45,457,133,643.76 |

Medical care | 5.14 | 38,638.43 | 387,384,305,915.73 |

Recreation | 1.10 | 266.04 | 3,660,359,287.08 |

Education and communication | 1.85 | 785.05 | 8,850,544,282.83 |

Other goods and services | 5.04 | 34,507.21 | 346,072,055,373.27 |

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 1901. This table and charts use the earliest available data for each category.

This inflation calculator uses the following inflation rate formula:

CPI in 2020CPI in 1901

×

1901 USD value

=

2020 USD value

Then plug in historical CPI values. The U.S. CPI was 8.5 in the year 1901 and 256.974 in 2020:

256.9748.5

×

$1,000,000,000

=

$1,000,000,000 in 1901 has the same "purchasing power" or "buying power" as $30,232,235,294.12 in 2020.

To get the total inflation rate for the 119 years between 1901 and 2020, we use the following formula:

CPI in 2020 - CPI in 1901CPI in 1901

×

100

=

Plugging in the values to this equation, we get:

256.974 - 8.58.5

×

100

=

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

- The funeral of Queen Victoria is held in St. George's Chapel
- Vincent Van Gough’s paintings cause a sensation during a Paris exhibit. He had died 10 years prior.
- Australia elects its first ever Prime Minister, Edmund Barton.
- President William McKinley is assassinated by Leon Czolgosz at the Pan-Am Exposition in New York.

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: “$1,000,000,000 in 1901 → 2020 | Inflation Calculator.” Official Inflation Data, Alioth Finance, 24 Jan. 2020, https://www.officialdata.org/us/inflation/1901?amount=1000000000.

Special thanks to QuickChart for providing downloadable chart images.

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

Cumulative price change | 2,923.22% |

Average inflation rate | 2.91% |

Converted amount ($1,000,000,000 base) | $30,232,235,294.12 |

Price difference ($1,000,000,000 base) | $29,232,235,294.12 |

CPI in 1901 | 8.500 |

CPI in 2020 | 256.974 |

Inflation in 1901 | 1.19% |

Inflation in 2020 | 2.29% |