The numeric data types are integer, decimal, floating-point, and decimal floating-point.

The numeric data types are categorized as follows:
  • Exact numerics: integer and decimal
  • Decimal floating-point
  • Approximate numerics: floating-point

Integer includes small integer, large integer, and big integer. Integer numbers are exact representations of integers. Decimal numbers are exact representations of numbers with a fixed precision and scale. Integer and decimal numbers are considered exact numeric types.

Decimal floating-point numbers can have a precision of 16 or 34. Decimal floating-point supports both exact representations of real numbers and approximation of real numbers and so is not considered either an exact numeric type or an approximate numeric type.

Floating-point includes single precision and double precision. Floating-point numbers are approximations of real numbers and are considered approximate numeric types.

All numbers have a sign, a precision, and a scale. For all numbers except decimal floating-point, if a column value is zero, the sign is positive. Decimal floating-point numbers include negative and positive zeros. Decimal floating-point has distinct values for a number and the same number with various exponents (for example: 0.0, 0.00, 0.0E5, 1.0, 1.00, 1.0000). The precision is the total number of decimal digits, excluding the sign. The scale is the total number of decimal digits to the right of the decimal point. If there is no decimal point, the scale is zero.

See also the data type section in the description of CREATE TABLE statement and CREATE TABLE (HADOOP) statement.

Small integer (SMALLINT)

A small integer is a two-byte integer with a precision of 5 digits. The range of small integers is -32 768 to 32 767.

Large integer (INTEGER)

A large integer is a four-byte integer with a precision of 10 digits. The range of large integers is -2 147 483 648 to +2 147 483 647.

Big integer (BIGINT)

A big integer is an eight-byte integer with a precision of 19 digits. The range of big integers is -9 223 372 036 854 775 808 to +9 223 372 036 854 775 807.


A decimal value is a packed decimal number with an implicit decimal point. The position of the decimal point is determined by the precision and the scale of the number. The scale, which is the number of digits in the fractional part of the number, cannot be negative or greater than the precision. The maximum precision is 31 digits.

All values in a decimal column have the same precision and scale. The range of a decimal variable or the numbers in a decimal column is -n to +n, where the absolute value of n is the largest number that can be represented with the applicable precision and scale. The maximum range is -1031+1 to 1031-1.

Single-precision floating-point (REAL)

A single-precision floating-point number is a 32-bit approximation of a real number. The number can be zero or can range from -3.4028234663852886e+38 to -1.1754943508222875e-38, or from 1.1754943508222875e-38 to 3.4028234663852886e+38.

Double-precision floating-point (DOUBLE or FLOAT)

A double-precision floating-point number is a 64-bit approximation of a real number. The number can be zero or can range from -1.7976931348623158e+308 to -2.2250738585072014e-308, or from 2.2250738585072014e-308 to 1.7976931348623158e+308.

Decimal floating-point (DECFLOAT)

A decimal floating-point value is an IEEE 754r number with a decimal point. The position of the decimal point is stored in each decimal floating-point value. The maximum precision is 34 digits. The range of a decimal floating-point number is either 16 or 34 digits of precision, and an exponent range of 10-383 to 10+384 or 10-6143 to 10+6144, respectively. The minimum exponent, Emin, for DECFLOAT values is -383 for DECFLOAT(16) and -6143 for DECFLOAT(34). The maximum exponent, Emax, for DECFLOAT values is 384 for DECFLOAT(16) and 6144 for DECFLOAT(34).

In addition to finite numbers, decimal floating-point numbers are able to represent one of the following named decimal floating-point special values:
  • Infinity - a value that represents a number whose magnitude is infinitely large
  • Quiet NaN - a value that represents undefined results and that does not cause an invalid number warning
  • Signalling NaN - a value that represents undefined results and that causes an invalid number warning if used in any numeric operation
When a number has one of these special values, its coefficient and exponent are undefined. The sign of an infinity value is significant, because it is possible to have positive or negative infinity. The sign of a NaN value has no meaning for arithmetic operations.

Subnormal numbers and underflow

Nonzero numbers whose adjusted exponents are less than Emin are called subnormal numbers. These subnormal numbers are accepted as operands for all operations and can result from any operation.

For a subnormal result, the minimum values of the exponent become Emin - (precision-1), called Etiny, where precision is the working precision. If necessary, the result is rounded to ensure that the exponent is no smaller than Etiny. If the result becomes inexact during rounding, an underflow warning is returned. A subnormal result does not always return the underflow warning.

When a number underflows to zero during a calculation, its exponent will be Etiny. The maximum value of the exponent is unaffected.

The maximum value of the exponent for subnormal numbers is the same as the minimum value of the exponent that can arise during operations that do not result in subnormal numbers. This occurs when the length of the coefficient in decimal digits is equal to the precision.