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I'm trying to calculate the modern value of 1950's Dutch guldens (guilders). Usually I'd use Wolfram Alpha for such a task, but it doesn't seem to understand pre-euro currencies.

This works fine: http://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=1+dollar+1950+now

But this assumes NL Antilles gulden (which still exists): http://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=1+gulden+1950+now

I've tried to vary the phrase a bit, but I can't figure it out.

  • If you are OK work the gulden to euro exchange rate when the euro was adopted, you should be able to calculate the value in gulden when the euro adoption happened and then carry forward in euros to get the present day value. You could use the same exchange rate to get back to gulden. If you are one of those who feels this was not a fair exchange rate, then I don't know what to suggest because the euro transition would have some hidden impact on inflation and the old gulden can no longer be exchanged for euros so there is no more current exchange rate. – Eric Jan 21 '16 at 13:28
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You could get an approximation using the Bretton Woods gold relationship. Try calculating the value of Gulden in gold during your period, and multiplying it by the value of gold today. Note that this doesn't take into account inflation and other factors, as the Bretton Woods peg didn't take it into account either.

Other methods can be, as mentioned previously, using the euro - gulden ex. rate at the introduction of the gulden, or a linear regression as an approximation, ARIMA modeling, etc.

Alternatively, if you are interested only in the effect of inflation, calculate a total inflation multiplier (that is, the effect inflation has had over the years on diminishing the value of (today's imaginary) gulden) and multiply the gulden's 1950 value by it. Again though, since Bretton Woods didn't allow inflation to naturally adjust the price of the currency, your results may be incorrect. You may want to adjust it using the U.S. inflation rate over the same period, as 1950s gulden was pegged to it.

As pointed out previously, you can't really get the value today, as there have been multiple monetary changes over the years.

I hope this puts you on the right path.

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