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Basic Sources of International Economic Statistics

Exchange Rates

Major Sources:

Global Financial Data Data on bonds, commodities, interest rates, stock markets and indices, futures, exchange rates, GDP, prices, and unemployment. World exchange rates back to 1624.  
Datastream International Provides exchange rates and other economic data. Coverage is international. Dates of coverage vary. Consult the "Indices, Interest and Exchange Rates" volume for details. On the program line type HELP ER? to get a list of codes. To change the currency default use the ~ followed by the code. For help on using exchange rates in Datastream see the guide.
Available in the RIS Suite on A Floor of Firestone and STOKES
Global Insight Provides daily data for exchange rates and forward rates.
Tick-by-tick Intraday Data Provides intraday data.  Princeton subscribes to the following components:  Futures, Cash Indices, VIX indicators (under Market Indicators), London Equities, Euronext Equities; and SPX (Standard & Poor's 500 options). Includes futures data on currencies, equity indexes, grains, metals, interest rates, energy commodities, foods, fibers, and meats.  Also includes intraday trade and quote data on equities traded on the London Stock Exchange and the Euronext as well as intraday Forex quote data (Forex trade data is no longer carried after 10/31/2014 since ‘trade data’ was actually just ‘bid data’ As ‘bid data’ is contained within the quote data).. Available on Restricted Workstations (A Floor - RIS Suite) 9 and 10. Dates of coverage vary.  Updated daily. Documentation includes many helpful tips.


Historical global price indexes for a number of cryptocurrencies (including Bitcoin), as calculated by Brave New Coin.

International Financial Statistics 1948- . (HG3851.I574 (Current edition in DSS)
Flagship publication of the International Monetary Fund. One of the first tables in each issue provides daily exchange rates for every business day of a previous month for major currencies plus SDR and Euro. The rates given are currency units per U.S. dollar. There is a slight time lag. In the "Country" pages more extensive data are given, providing annual figures for the last 7 years, quarterly data for the last 3 years, and monthly data for the last 9 months. Countries included are those which are members of the IMF. Summary statistics and "real effective exchange rates" can be found in International Financial Statistics Yearbook, 1979-. Available electronically through Global Insight and Data-Planet Datasets.
Foreign Exchange Rates for the Week Ending.... Federal Reserve System publication. Each issue provides daily figures for the previous week. Covers about 25 currencies.

Other Sources


Berlin, Howard M. World Monetary Units: An Historical Dictionary, Country by Country.
Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 2006.
Provides brief monetary histories and chronologies for 203 countries and four confederations.
(DR) HG216.B465 2006
Bidwell, R.L. Currency conversion tables: a hundred years of change.  London: Collings, 1970.

Provides exchange rates for 28 countries to the U.S. dollar and the British pound from 1914 to 1969 in most cases. For some, information is given prior to 1914.
(DR) HG219 .B5

Denzel, Markus A. Handbook of world exchange rates, 1590-1914.  Farnham, Surrey, England ; Burlington, VT : Ashgate, c2010. (DSS) HG3815 .D46 2010
McCusker, John J. Money and Exchange in Europe and America, 1600-1775: A Handbook.
Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina, 1978.
(DR) HG219.M33
World Currency Yearbook. 1957-1993. Provides history and statistics for world currencies. Includes black market rates.
(DR) HG219.P58
Handbook of Medieval ExchangeSpufford, Peter.
London: Offices of the Royal Historical Society, 1986.
(DR) HG3811.S68
MEMDB: Medieval and Early Modern Data Bank Contains currency data from the Medieval Ages.

Currency Converters