How Do You Write Decimal Data Type in SQL?


Larry Thompson

When working with SQL, it is important to understand how to handle different data types. One such data type is the decimal data type, which allows you to store numbers with decimal places. In this article, we will explore how to write the decimal data type in SQL.

Decimal Data Type

The decimal data type is used to store numbers with decimal places. It is commonly used when dealing with monetary values or any other values that require precise calculations. The syntax for declaring a column with the decimal data type is as follows:


column_name DECIMAL(precision, scale)

Here, precision represents the total number of digits that can be stored (both before and after the decimal point), while scale represents the number of digits that can be stored after the decimal point.


To better understand how to use the decimal data type, let’s consider an example where we have a table named “Products” which stores information about different products.


product_id INT,
product_name VARCHAR(50),
price DECIMAL(8, 2)

In this example, we have declared a “price” column of type decimal with a precision of 8 and a scale of 2. This means that our column can store up to 6 digits before the decimal point and 2 digits after the decimal point.

Inserting Values:

To insert values into our “Products” table, we can use the INSERT INTO statement. Let’s insert a few sample values:


INSERT INTO Products (product_id, product_name, price)
VALUES (1, 'Product A', 9.99);

In this example, we are inserting a product with an ID of 1, a name of “Product A,” and a price of 9.99. Since our “price” column is of the decimal data type, it can store the value with the specified precision and scale.

Retrieving Values:

To retrieve values from our “Products” table, we can use the SELECT statement. Let’s retrieve all products along with their prices:


SELECT product_name, price
FROM Products;

This query will return the product names and prices for all products in our table.


The decimal data type is essential when working with numbers that require precise calculations or handling decimal values. By properly declaring columns with the decimal data type and specifying the precision and scale, you can ensure accurate storage and retrieval of decimal values in your SQL database.

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