Rough draft: Proposed format specifier for a thousands separator

JanC usenet at janc.invalid
Sat Mar 14 19:38:19 CET 2009

Raymond Hettinger wrote:

> No doubt that you're skeptical of anything you didn't
> already know ;-)  I'm a CPA, was a 15 year division controller
> for a Fortune 500 company, and an auditor for an international
> accounting firm.  Believe me when I say it is the norm in finance.
> Besides, it seems like you're arguing that thousands separators
> aren't needed anywhere at all and have doubts about their
> utility.  Pick-up your pocket calculator and take a look.
> Look at your paycheck or your bank statement.

My current bank and my previous bank use 2 ways to write numbers:

1. a decimal comma, and a space (or half-space or any other appropriate
   small whitespace) as a thousands separator
2. written full out in words (including the currency names)

Invoices (not from these banks) often use a point as the thousands
separator (although that's "wrong" according to some national
standards, it's probably okay according to accounting standards...). 

The second formatting (full words) is a legal requirement on certain
financial & legal documents here (and I can imagine in other countries
too?).  Anybody working on a PEP about implementing a 'w' (for "wordy"?)
formatting type?  ;-)


More information about the Python-list mailing list