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AVG (Transact-SQL)

Returns the average of the values in a group. Null values are ignored. May be followed by the OVER clause.

Topic link icon Transact-SQL Syntax Conventions

AVG ( [ ALL | DISTINCT ] expression ) 

ALL

Applies the aggregate function to all values. ALL is the default.

DISTINCT

Specifies that AVG be performed only on each unique instance of a value, regardless of how many times the value occurs.

expression

Is an expression of the exact numeric or approximate numeric data type category, except for the bit data type. Aggregate functions and subqueries are not permitted.

The return type is determined by the type of the evaluated result of expression.

Expression result

Return type

tinyint

int

smallint

int

int

int

bigint

bigint

decimal category (p, s)

decimal(38, s) divided by decimal(10, 0)

money and smallmoney category

money

float and real category

float

If the data type of expression is an alias data type, the return type is also of the alias data type. However, if the base data type of the alias data type is promoted, for example from tinyint to int, the return value is of the promoted data type and not the alias data type.

AVG () computes the average of a set of values by dividing the sum of those values by the count of nonnull values. If the sum exceeds the maximum value for the data type of the return value an error will be returned.

A. Using the SUM and AVG functions for calculations

The following example calculates the average vacation hours and the sum of sick leave hours that the vice presidents of Adventure Works Cycles have used. Each of these aggregate functions produces a single summary value for all the retrieved rows.

USE AdventureWorks2012;
GO
SELECT AVG(VacationHours)AS 'Average vacation hours', 
    SUM(SickLeaveHours) AS 'Total sick leave hours'
FROM HumanResources.Employee
WHERE JobTitle LIKE 'Vice President%';

Here is the result set.

Average vacation hours       Total sick leave hours

----------------------       ----------------------

25                           97

(1 row(s) affected)

B. Using the SUM and AVG functions with a GROUP BY clause

When used with a GROUP BY clause, each aggregate function produces a single value for each group, instead of for the whole table. The following example produces summary values for each sales territory. The summary lists the average bonus received by the sales people in each territory and the sum of year-to-date sales for each territory.

USE AdventureWorks2012;
GO
SELECT TerritoryID, AVG(Bonus)as 'Average bonus', SUM(SalesYTD) as 'YTD sales'
FROM Sales.SalesPerson
GROUP BY TerritoryID;
GO

Here is the result set.

TerritoryID Average Bonus         YTD Sales
----------- --------------------- ---------------------
NULL        0.00                  1252127.9471
1           4133.3333             4502152.2674
2           4100.00               3763178.1787
3           2500.00               3189418.3662
4           2775.00               6709904.1666
5           6700.00               2315185.611
6           2750.00               4058260.1825
7           985.00                3121616.3202
8           75.00                 1827066.7118
9           5650.00               1421810.9242
10          5150.00               4116871.2277

(11 row(s) affected)

C. Using AVG with DISTINCT

The following statement returns the average list price of products. By specifying DISTINCT, only unique values are considered in the calculation.

USE AdventureWorks2012;
GO
SELECT AVG(DISTINCT ListPrice)
FROM Production.Product;

Here is the result set.

------------------------------

437.4042

(1 row(s) affected)

D. Using AVG without DISTINCT

Without DISTINCT, the AVG function finds the average list price of all products in the Product table including any duplicate values.

USE AdventureWorks2012;
GO
SELECT AVG(ListPrice)
FROM Production.Product;

Here is the result set.

------------------------------

438.6662

(1 row(s) affected)

E. Using the OVER clause

The following example uses the AVG function with the OVER clause to provide a moving average of yearly sales for each territory in the Sales.SalesPerson table. The data is partitioned by TerritoryID and logically ordered by SalesYTD. This means that the AVG function is computed for each territory based on the sales year. Notice that for TerritoryID 1, there are two rows for sales year 2005 representing the two sales people with sales that year. The average sales for these two rows is computed and then the third row representing sales for the year 2006 is included in the computation.

USE AdventureWorks2012;
GO
SELECT BusinessEntityID, TerritoryID 
   ,DATEPART(yy,ModifiedDate) AS SalesYear
   ,CONVERT(varchar(20),SalesYTD,1) AS  SalesYTD
   ,CONVERT(varchar(20),AVG(SalesYTD) OVER (PARTITION BY TerritoryID 
                                            ORDER BY DATEPART(yy,ModifiedDate) 
                                           ),1) AS MovingAvg
   ,CONVERT(varchar(20),SUM(SalesYTD) OVER (PARTITION BY TerritoryID 
                                            ORDER BY DATEPART(yy,ModifiedDate) 
                                            ),1) AS CumulativeTotal
FROM Sales.SalesPerson
WHERE TerritoryID IS NULL OR TerritoryID < 5
ORDER BY TerritoryID,SalesYear;

Here is the result set.

BusinessEntityID TerritoryID SalesYear   SalesYTD             MovingAvg            CumulativeTotal
---------------- ----------- ----------- -------------------- -------------------- --------------------
274              NULL        2005        559,697.56           559,697.56           559,697.56
287              NULL        2006        519,905.93           539,801.75           1,079,603.50
285              NULL        2007        172,524.45           417,375.98           1,252,127.95
283              1           2005        1,573,012.94         1,462,795.04         2,925,590.07
280              1           2005        1,352,577.13         1,462,795.04         2,925,590.07
284              1           2006        1,576,562.20         1,500,717.42         4,502,152.27
275              2           2005        3,763,178.18         3,763,178.18         3,763,178.18
277              3           2005        3,189,418.37         3,189,418.37         3,189,418.37
276              4           2005        4,251,368.55         3,354,952.08         6,709,904.17
281              4           2005        2,458,535.62         3,354,952.08         6,709,904.17

(10 row(s) affected)

In this example, the OVER clause does not include PARTITION BY. This means that the function will be applied to all rows returned by the query. The ORDER BY clause specified in the OVER clause determines the logical order to which the AVG function is applied. The query returns a moving average of sales by year for all sales territories specified in the WHERE clause. The ORDER BY clause specified in the SELECT statement determines the order in which the rows of the query are displayed.

SELECT BusinessEntityID, TerritoryID 
   ,DATEPART(yy,ModifiedDate) AS SalesYear
   ,CONVERT(varchar(20),SalesYTD,1) AS  SalesYTD
   ,CONVERT(varchar(20),AVG(SalesYTD) OVER (ORDER BY DATEPART(yy,ModifiedDate) 
                                            ),1) AS MovingAvg
   ,CONVERT(varchar(20),SUM(SalesYTD) OVER (ORDER BY DATEPART(yy,ModifiedDate) 
                                            ),1) AS CumulativeTotal
FROM Sales.SalesPerson
WHERE TerritoryID IS NULL OR TerritoryID < 5
ORDER BY SalesYear;

Here is the result set.

BusinessEntityID TerritoryID SalesYear   SalesYTD             MovingAvg            CumulativeTotal
---------------- ----------- ----------- -------------------- -------------------- --------------------
274              NULL        2005        559,697.56           2,449,684.05         17,147,788.35
275              2           2005        3,763,178.18         2,449,684.05         17,147,788.35
276              4           2005        4,251,368.55         2,449,684.05         17,147,788.35
277              3           2005        3,189,418.37         2,449,684.05         17,147,788.35
280              1           2005        1,352,577.13         2,449,684.05         17,147,788.35
281              4           2005        2,458,535.62         2,449,684.05         17,147,788.35
283              1           2005        1,573,012.94         2,449,684.05         17,147,788.35
284              1           2006        1,576,562.20         2,138,250.72         19,244,256.47
287              NULL        2006        519,905.93           2,138,250.72         19,244,256.47
285              NULL        2007        172,524.45           1,941,678.09         19,416,780.93
(10 row(s) affected)

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