International Currency Formatting Guidelines — Currency Codes
In developing a web application that presents monetary data for a variety of locales, I have inquired about the differences of currency formats. In particular, I'd like to know when it is appropriate to use currency codes, either in addition to or instead of currency symbols.
It's my understanding that all mainstream currencies require that a currency symbol be included, but some show them in different order (as seen on this website). The four currencies that I facilitate in my application are USD, CAD, GBP, and EUR — all of which have the same general currency format.
It makes sense to include the currency codes for USD and CAD, since they have the same currency code, but what about the others? What's the norm in these other countries?
Anyway, I have below what I think to be the correct formats. Please let me know if I have made any errors:
• United States — $1,234,567.89 USD
• Canada — $1,234,567.89 CAD
• Great Britain — £1.234.567,89 GBP
• European — €1.234.567,89 EUR
Also, should there ever be spaces between the currency symbols and the numbers? That is yet another thing I do know happens sometimes, but am not sure what the rules are.
Ireland would write `EUR 1.234.567,89` as `EUR 1,234,567.89`: so a) use US/British commas and periods, and b) only use `€` or `EUR` not both.
While I agree that using `€` and `EUR` both is strange, I think I have to for consistency in this case. It's good to know that in other applications that's not what one should do.
Not all of the countries use those types of format, Display Formats Some like Chile for example, don't use decimals, thus don't need decimal separators.
I'll just answer for the Euro:
European — €1.234.567,89 EUR
Normally you'd use either the euro symbol or the 3-letter abbrevation, not both at the same time. The combination looks a bit odd, but is perfectly understandable.
The style guide used by the institutions of the European Union includes rules for expressing monetary units. The most important ones:
- Use the written name ('an amount in euros') when a monetary unit is referred to generally but an amount is not included
- ISO code ‘EUR’ followed by a fixed space and the amount in figures in written text (compulsory in legal texts). (In English, Irish, Latvian and Maltese. In all other official EU languages the order is reversed: 250 EUR).
- The euro sign € is primarily used in graphics. However, its use is also permitted in popular works and promotional publications (e.g. sales catalogues). No space after the euro sign: €35.
My personal preference would be €1.234.567,89 for most texts (that feels most natural and familiar) and 1.234.567,89 EUR for legal/formal documents (or EUR 1.234.567,89 when written in English).
UPDATE: Complete list of currency formats.
What about ranges? I wonder if this use of the sign would be correct to say 0,10 to 1 euros: €0,10 - €1