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Purchasing Power of Money in the United States
from 1774 to Present

Initial Year*:
Initial Amount: $
Desired Year*:

* Select Initial and Desired Years within 1774 and 2013 period. Enter data as a number without a $ sign or commas.

Why not 2014?

A Purchasing Power Calculator compares the relative value of a past amount of dollars to a present amount. A simple calculator uses only the prices of consumer purchases to do this whereas a complete purchasing power calculator, such as found in this website, uses various prices, wages, output, etc., depending on the context. For more information on this issue consult Seven Ways to Compute the Relative Value of a US Dollar Amount, 1774 - Present where you will find a much more extensive discussion of how to compute relative worth with many examples.

The answers you get from this calculator will be the same as those from the Relative Value calculator. That is, you will get the "simple" purchasing power calculator result and other choices that may be better depending on the context.

To determine the value of an amount of money in a particular ("original") year compared to another ("desired") year, enter the values in the appropriate places below. For example, you may want to know: How much money would you need in the year 2000, to have the same "purchasing power" as $500 in year 1960? If you entered these values in the correct places, you will find that the "the simple purchase power" answer is $2,910.00.

You can make this computation among all the years between 1774 and Present.


Samuel H. Williamson, "Purchasing Power of Money in the United States from 1774 to Present," MeasuringWorth, .


Please let us know if and how this discussion has assisted you in using our calculators.