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st: RE: ss# imports as scientific notation

From   "Steichen, Thomas J." <[email protected]>
To   <[email protected]>
Subject   st: RE: ss# imports as scientific notation
Date   Mon, 7 Mar 2005 13:38:28 -0500

Robin Newberry wrote:
> For some reason when I was importing a comma delimited dataset into 
> Stata it converted all of the SS# info into scientific notation. The 
> #'s weren't in standard ss# format (999-99-9999) but unformatted 
> (999999999), so the end result was 9.99e+08. Currently the filed is 
> in %10.0g format - is there a way to convert these back to a non 
> numeric field?
If you imported the SSN into a float then you will not be able to 
recover all the digits no matter how you format it. Floats only 
hold <8 digits and the SSN's are 9 digits, so the number will be 
precision-truncated. Once these digits are lost they cannot be recovered.

You will need to re-import them into a long or a double precision 
variable (or a string variable).


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