SQL Money

All the money on the world

I was learning about Databases and apart from learning to never use float type to represent money, I also learned that ALL the money in the entire world is about $75 trillion US Dollars. That’s:


The reason that this would be significant is, a BIGINT data type has a range from -9223372036854775808 to 9223372036854775807 according to launch school. This would be an ample amount of digits to accurately represent the number of US cents one would have. The top limit being…


or 92 (thousand trillion? what comes after trillion) Dollars.

So assuming, one person doesn’t own MORE then all the money in the world in US Dallors about a 1000 times over, using the BIGINT data type should be sufficient to represent their account values in USD.

Recommended data types to represent money are actually DECIMAL(13, 2), or thirteen digits to hold in total, including 2 decimal points. This limit brings us to 10 trillion dollars. Should be good right?


But, then what about inflated currency?

So, as we all know, the USD isn’t the only unit of currency in the world, so for different exchange rates, one would have to represent their currency and consider different ranges of values. I Googled a bit and found out that the inflation rate for Hungary was 13.6 quadrillion percent [Oh, that’s what’s after trillion] per MONTH! at one time, or in other words…

13600000000000000 %.

I’m thinking that would mean if you had x USD worth of 100 Hungarian Pengos, that would be ‘100 x (136000000000000)’ after a month, and

13600000000000000 x (136000000000000)

or in other words… a number MORE then the biggest number possible to represent currency in the database.

I’m guessing basic operations don’t apply for numbers outside the range…

Things like -99999999999999999999 + 1 = +99999999999999999999 would surface. (Maybe you should go into major debt, and once you owe more money then there is in the entire world, the computer will break, and you’ll be rich.

Is this a problem?

I’m not sure what would need to happen in these situations. I remember back in the Y2K era, people were freaking out about the year 2000, breaking computers around the world. It’s interesting how advantageous it is to have computers, and at the same time problematic as we become more dependent on technology.

Anyway, onward with databases. I wonder what I’ll learn next.