SELECT ROUND(4.524965325714286, 2);

I'd have thought that should be 4.53, because

  • 6 rounds 8 to 9
  • 9 rounds 2 to 3
  • 3 leaves 4 as 4
  • ..
  • so. it ends up lastly doing 4.525 rounds to 4.53

It looks like it's doing

  • I want 4.524965325714286 as 2 decimal places
  • Q: What's the third decimal? A: 4
  • 4 doesn't round up
  • Return 4.52

Is that a correct representation of what happens?

I'm using MySQL version 5.7.20

closed as off-topic by Joe Obbish, mustaccio, Philᵀᴹ, Mr.Brownstone, RDFozz Oct 31 '17 at 17:55

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  • 1
    Yes, this is correct. It's also the definition in the documentation, and also how mathematicians do it. – Colin 't Hart Oct 31 '17 at 22:15

Round's job is to

  1. Lose precision
  2. Get you as close as it can to the proper value

You have an algorithm, but how close does it get you to the proper value?

SELECT abs(4.524965325714286-4.52) AS "452",
  abs(4.524965325714286-4.53) AS "453";
        452        |        453        
 0.004965325714286 | 0.005034674285714
(1 row)

As you can see, you're actually further away and you've done more work. Because of that, that's why rounding doesn't work as you had intended.

You could make an iterative rounding function to do what you want but that's a different question.


When it is looking at rounding it only looks at the next decimal place to see which direction to round. So in your case it is seeing 4.524 which does not round up to 4.53. I have never heard of a system that rounds up all decimal values until it gets to your limit.

Think of it this way if 2 decimal points is what is important (think a lot of currencies) would you really want the 4th or later decimal value to impact what is calculated for a payment amount?

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