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lnmpurdue

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Posts: 1
Reply with quote  #1 
I am trying to find an external authoritative source such as this to help me create a standard for our organization. 

If I am abbreviating say $50,000 into a visualization, should it be $50K or $50k.  For that matter as well, should there be a space between the number and the K as well?

I would love to find the correct answer and any documentation that I can reference vs personal opinions.

Thanks everyone.
sfew

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Posts: 845
Reply with quote  #2 
As far as I know, this is not addressed by any official standards. Instead, we rely on common practice. Both K and k are used, typically without a space between the number and the K. Keep in mind, however, that K, which stands for kilo, is not the only abbreviation for thousands that is used. The Roman numberal M is also sometimes used for thousands. When K is used for thousands, M is used for millions, but when M is used for thousands, MM is used for millions. The fact that M can represent either thousands or millions invites confusion. At a minimum, we should be careful to pick one set of abbreviations, either K and M or M and MM, and use it consistently. An international standard would be useful, but apparently does not exist.
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Stephen Few
danz

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Posts: 191
Reply with quote  #3 
lnmpurdue,

Usually a small note showing "x 1,000$" or "x 1,000,000€" saves your audience from any guess. This kind of note can be used in titles of a graphical display, in the labels of column tables or in chart axis descriptions.

Otherwise, I prefer (K, M, B, T) abbreviations, which seems to be widely accepted. As Stephen said, in finance M is the abbreviation used for thousands and MM for millions, which I personally avoid (if I have a choice).
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