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st: problem in uploading data into Stata - data "changes"

From   Gisella Young <>
Subject   st: problem in uploading data into Stata - data "changes"
Date   Tue, 1 Jul 2008 08:05:01 -0700 (PDT)

Dear all,

I am trying to load a datafile in text format into Stata. I am using the infix command. The problem is that 1 column of data (the firm column, which is the unique identification number for each observation, is different when I open it in Stata as from what I can see in the original text file. In fact I have several such text files for various years, and in every case the problem is the same: all variables upload correctly except for the first one. Not only is that number different but it is no longer unique to each observation. It is however the same number of digits as the original. I have checked that the infix command is specified correctly (eg correct number of digits). 

I have also tried saving the text file into excel (and applying text-to-columns) and then converting it into a stata file using Stat-transfer. When I do this all the variable upload correctly into Stata. The problem is that I cannot do this for the entire files because of their size (the limits of Excel mean that only a small fraction of each file can be accommodated), so this is not a solution.

I realise that it may be difficult for someone to suggest an explanation/solution without seeing the actual data, but I wonder whether there are any suggestions as to what the problem might potentially be, and how to get around it?

Many thanks,


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