Style Guide > 1 Formatting > [1.69] Currency
[1.69] Currency
1.69 Consistency within a category, currency
Consistency within a category overrides the guidelines that follow. In particular, if the format $27 million has been used, then use the same format for all numbers in the same category—for example, $1,800 million and $0.34 million, not the otherwise preferred formats of $1.8 billion nor $340 thousand. This is especially important in tables when comparing the same category—that is, if revenue is shown in millions in the first table, then revenue must be shown in millions in all tables that follow.
1.70 Rounding currency
When quoting numbers from another source, do not round unless the number is intended to be generalized. Otherwise, if the exact number is not material, round to two or fewer significant figures after the decimal point. Always round numbers to the same precision within the same category.
1.71 Numerals vs words, currency
In general, use numbers with symbols to show amounts of money. Use words when expressing approximations, such as, “This approach will save thousands of dollars.”
76 thousand dollars
1.72 Thousands, millions, and billions, currency
Thousands, millions, and billions of currency can be shown in several formats, but be consistent within the same category.
$76 thousand, $2.7 million, $5.12 billion
Use this format when the number has (or is rounded to) two or fewer significant figures after the decimal point. Do not use thousands for numbers of less then $10 thousand, instead write out the number in full—for example, $7,700, but not $7.7 thousand.
$2,700; $75,734; $2,683,000; $5,122,299,800
Use this format when showing the precise (unrounded) number or when there are more than two significant figures after the decimal point and for numbers of less than $10 thousand.
$76k, $2.7m, $5.12b
The suffixes k, m, and b are abbreviations for thousand, million, and billion, and should only be used informally or when space is a consideration. Unlike an SI symbol, there is no space between the number and its suffix. Take care not to confuse these abbreviations with the SI symbol m (metre) and the SI prefixes k, M, and G. For example, 10m is the abbreviation for 10 million, but 10 m is 10 metres. And 5k is the abbreviation for 5,000, but 5 K is 5 kelvin and the k in 5 kW is the SI prefix for 1,000. In general, limit the figures after the decimal point to two or fewer.
$ thousand, $ million, $ billion
Use abbreviations in this format in table headings, or, if space is a consideration, their abbreviated forms $k (A$k, AUD k), $m (US$m, USD m), and $b (C$b, CAD b).
$76K $2.7M $5B
$2.7 thousand
3 million dollars
$000’s $’000s $’000
1.73 Rates of cost and revenue
Treat the currency abbreviation as a symbol when expressing rates of cost, for example, 2.91 $/t, otherwise spell out the entire expression. If any one term is not a unit of measure, spell out the entire expression. Do not combine numbers or words with SI symbols in an expression.
If space is a consideration (in tables, for example), define an abbreviation in the text that introduces the table—for example, dollars per megawatt hour per station per day ($/MW·h pspd), but ensure that the abbreviation is properly defined.
Rates of time are often clearer if spelled out but can be abbreviated in the form pd, pm, or pa, if space is a consideration. In general, for units of time less than one day, use the appropriate SI symbol (h, min, s). For example, the units in the “Rate” column of a costing table can be shown as A$/d, A$ pd, or A$ per day.
Where a table contains multiple units, such as a quotation or an invoice, use separate columns for unit cost and units, for example:
Define all abbreviations and symbols in the front matter of the report.
27 $/t or $27 per tonne
0.035 $/GJ or $0.035 per gigajoule
3.40 $/kg or $3.40 per kilogram
$250 per year (or, if space is a consideration, $250 pa or 250 $/y)
$3.25 per hour (or, if space is a consideration, 3.25 $/h)
$0.0047 per kilowatt hour per customer per month (or, if space is a consideration, 0.0047 $/kW·h pcpm, where pcpm has been defined as an abbreviation in your document)
0.0047 $/kW·h/customer/month
1.74 Currency abbreviations
If more than one currency is used in a document, use the corresponding currency abbreviation with each amount in the text. In a table, include the currency abbreviation in the title or heading. Do not use symbols that are not well-known.
Note. The Reserve Bank of Australia recommends the use of A$.
If more than one currency is used in a document and any one needs to be defined by its three-letter currency code (because its symbol is not well-known), then use codes instead of symbols with all currencies—that is, AUD2,000 instead of A$2,000). A full list of currency codes can be found at The standard symbols and codes for some frequently used currencies are given in the following table.
1.75 Exchange rates
When showing a conversion rate, place the currency or abbreviation after the number. Make sure that the direction of the conversion is clear, and always show the unit, reference currency.
In general, show the conversion rate to three significant figures. If the conversion rate is less than 0.01, multiply the unit reference by 100, 1000, or as required to give a rate above 0.01. Also see Currency abbreviations.
USD/AUD = 0.92
A$1.00 = US$1.0345
1.00 INR = 0.000733 AUD
1.00 US dollars equals 0.923 Australian dollars
Or, if space is a consideration,
1.00 $US = 0.923 $A
1.00 AUD = 6.34 CNY
1000 INR = 0.733 AUD
In tables, use column or row headings that make it clear which is the unit, reference currency. For example:
Table 2.3 Australian dollar exchange rates
Ask Doxical
Copyright © 2008-2014 Doxical Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.