Historical financial statistics

Welcome to Historical Financial Statistics, a free, noncommercial data set that went online in July 2010. We aim to be a source of comprehensive, authoritative, easy-to-use macroeconomic data stretching back several centuries. Our target range of coverage is from 1492 to the present, with special emphasis on the years before 1950, which few databases cover in detail.

Here is a brief description of the contents of the site.

  • Data: Data are currently stored as spreadsheets. Data include some series not found anywhere else. Eventually we intend to establish a searchable, menu-driven database. The data we currently have are only a beginning, more extensive than in other free sources, but sparse in an absolute sense. We are gathering data as time and convenience allow, and welcome help.
  • Documentation: Notes to accompany the data. Eventually this section will also include chronologies and other useful tools to help understand the data.
  • Submitting data: We welcome additions to the data. Here is how to submit them.
  • Links: Other useful sources of historical statistics.
  • About us: Contact information plus a description of our mission, topics of coverage, copyright information, legal notice, etc.

Recent Additions

Recently added statistics, accessible from the Data page, include these series:

  • Price indices across France during the hyperinflation of the French Revolution, by Eugene N. White (Rutgers University).
  • Exchange controls in more than 100 countries from 1950 to 2004, by Dennis Quinn (Georgetown University) and A. Maria Toyoda (Villanova University).
  • Consumer prices in Canada from 1761 to 1913, by Gilles Pacquet (University of Ottawa) and Jean-Pierre Wallot (formerly Archives Canada).
  • Central bank policy interest rates from the 1920s to the 1950s for many countries, compiled by us from Federal Reserve data.
  • Weekly data on European market interest rates from 1870 to 1914, by Larry Neal (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign) and Marc Weidenmier (Claremont McKenna College).

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