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Length format informat

Posts: 25

Length format informat

For character variable if i use length statement , it will change format and informat as well.

In numeric variable if ii only use format statement, it will change informat also. But if i only use informat statement it wont change the format.
Super User
Posts: 23,776

Re: Length format informat

The informat and format don't have to match.


I'm also not clear on what your trying to ask, can you please clarify your question?

Valued Guide
Posts: 864

Re: Length format informat

You use informat to tell SAS how to read input, it has nothing to do with the display.  Format is how SAS will display your data and has nothing to do with how SAS reads the data from the source.

Posts: 25

Re: Length format informat

Data test1;

length x $32 ;

format y 4.;

informat z 4.;



In above case , we have 3 variables x ,y, z. 

After running the code we will get the below attributes of variables:-

X:- length $32

     informat $32.

     format $32.

y:- length 8

     informat 4.

     format 4.

z:- length 8

     informat 4.

     format best12.


If u will check Y and Z variable. U can see that for 'Y' format statement has changed informat as well.

But for 'Z' variable informat statement has not changed format.

SO my question is why SAS is doing so?



Super User
Posts: 10,280

Re: Length format informat

I can't tell you why SAS is doing it, I can only tell you that SAS has (probably) been doing it this way for a long time. Just keep in mind that it does, and write your code accordingly.


Anytime I need a specific format or informat assigned to a variable, I always write it out explicitly; I never let a computer assume something that could bite me in the ass later.

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