Help using Base SAS procedures

Is there any specific situations where character formats can be applied on numeric variables and vice versa??

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Contributor
Posts: 27

Is there any specific situations where character formats can be applied on numeric variables and vice versa??

Data a;

input start label $9.;

fmtname="$abc";

cards;

101 bangalore

102 mangalore

103 mysore

104 bellary

105 davangere

;

proc format cntlin=a;

run;

data b;

input xyz;

format xyz $abc.;

cards;

101

102

104

108

;

proc print;

run;

In the above program, the format gets applied on the numeric variable. But when i create a numeric format and apply it on character variable, it will not work. can somebody explain to me this.

Thanks in advance.

Bharath.

Super User
Super User
Posts: 7,401

Re: Is there any specific situations where character formats can be applied on numeric variables and vice versa??

I am not sure I full yunderstand your question.  the code you have posted fails to run, as it should.  Character formats, those ones with name starting $ can only be applied to character data, those formats without the dollar can only be assigned to numeric variables.  Now in your example, the first dataset is reading the variable START in as a numeric, hence in the format step it is setting the format as numeric.  In your second datastep you are also reading xyz in as numeric.  If you change both input statements to :

input start $ label $9.;

and

input xyz $;


Then the code will run.

Contributor
Posts: 27

Re: Is there any specific situations where character formats can be applied on numeric variables and vice versa??

I understood why the program was runnnig in my session. I had a numeric as well as character format with the same name. Instead of applying character format, SAS was applying numeric format i guess.

Contributor
Posts: 27

Re: Is there any specific situations where character formats can be applied on numeric variables and vice versa??

The format that got created here (abc) will be a character format.

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