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LISTAGG

The LISTAGG function aggregates a set of strings into one string by concatenating the strings. Optionally, a separator string can be provided which is inserted between contiguous input strings.

Read syntax diagramSkip visual syntax diagramLISTAGG(ALLDISTINCT string-expression,separator)WITHIN GROUP(ORDER BY,sort-keyASCDESC)

The schema is SYSIBM.

The LISTAGG function aggregates a set of string values for a group into one string by appending the string-expression values based on the order that is specified in the WITHIN GROUP clause.

The function is applied to the set of values that are derived from the first argument by the elimination of null values. If a separator argument is specified that is not the null value, the separator value is inserted between each pair of non-null string-expression values.

string-expression
An expression that specifies the string values to aggregate. The expression must return a value that is a built-in character string, graphic string, or a binary string data type that is not a LOB. If the value is a CLOB, it is implicitly cast to VARCHAR before the function is evaluated up to a maximum length of 32704. If the value is a DBCLOB, it is implicitly cast to VARGRAPHIC before the function is evaluated up to a maximum length of 16352. If the value is a BLOB, it is implicitly cast to VARBINARY before the function is evaluated up to a maximum length of 32704.

The argument can also be a numeric data type. The numeric argument is implicitly cast to a VARCHAR data type.

If string-expression is a column encoded by a field procedure, the decoded value is used in the result.

separator
A constant expression that defines the string that is to be used between non-null string-expression values. The expression must return a value that is a built-in character string, graphic string, or a binary string data type.

LOBs are supported through implicit casting. If the value is a CLOB, it is implicitly cast to VARCHAR before the function is evaluated up to a maximum length of 32704. If the value is a DBCLOB, it is implicitly cast to VARGRAPHIC before the function is evaluated up to a maximum length of 16352. If the value is a BLOB, it is implicitly cast to VARBINARY before the function is evaluated up to a maximum length of 32704.

The separator can be a literal, special register, variable, or an expression that is based on literals, special registers, or variables, provided that the expression does not include a non-deterministic function or a function that takes an external action.

WITHIN GROUP
Indicates that the aggregation follows the specified ordering within the grouping set.

If WITHIN GROUP is not specified, the ordering of strings within the result is not deterministic.

ORDER BY
Specifies the order of the rows from the same grouping set that are processed in the aggregation. If the ORDER BY clause cannot distinguish the order of the column data, the rows in the same grouping set are arbitrarily ordered.
sort-key
The sort key can be a column name or a sort-key-expression. If the sort key is a constant, it does not refer to the position of the output column (as in the ORDER BY clause of a query); It is a constant, which implies no sort key.

If the sort key value is a constant, the constant does not refer to the position of the output column, but is simply a constant, which implies that there is no sort key.

sort-key must not include a scalar fullselect, or any function that is non-deterministic or has an external action. sort-key must not reference a column for which a column mask is defined.

If sort-key is encoded by a field procedure, the encoded value determines the order.

ASC
Processes the sort-key in ascending order. This is the default option.
DESC
Processes the sort-key in descending order.

The result data type of LISTAGG is based on the data type of string-expression:

  • If the data type of string-expression is CHAR(n) or VARCHAR(n), the data type of the result is VARCHAR(MIN(MAX(4000,n), 32704).
    • If the string-expression and separator are both bit data, the result is bit data. Otherwise, neither string-expression nor separator can be bit data.

    • If string-expression and separator are both SBCS Unicode data, the CCSID of the result is the CCSID for SBCS Unicode data.
    • If string-expression is SBCS Unicode data, and separator is not SBCS Unicode data, the CCSID of the result is the mixed CCSID for Unicode data.
    • Otherwise, the CCSID of the result is the mixed CCSID that corresponds to the CCSID of string-expression. However, if the input is EBCDIC or ASCII and there is no corresponding system CCSID for mixed, the CCSID of the result is the CCSID of string-expression.
  • If the data type of string-expression is GRAPHIC(n) or VARGRAPHIC(n), the data type of the result is VARGRAPHIC( MAX(2000,n), 16352). The encoding scheme of the result is the same as string-expression. The CCSID of the result is the same as the CCSID of string-expression. separator cannot be bit data .
  • If the data type of string-expression is BINARY(n) or VARBINARY(n), the data type of the result is VARBINARY( MAX(4000,n), 32704).

The result data type can exceed VARCHAR(4000), VARBINARY(4000), or VARGRAPHIC(2000), if a derived size is used to determine the size of the result. The maximum possible value is the maximum for the result data type. The following example yields a return data type of VARCHAR(10000):

LISTAGG(CAST(NAME AS VARCHAR(10000)),',')

If the actual length of the aggregated result string exceeds the maximum for the result data type, an error is returned.

The result can be null. If the function is applied to an empty set, or all of the string-expression values in the set are null values, the result is a null value.

The following restrictions apply to LISTAGG:

  • LISTAGG cannot be used as part of an OLAP specification.
  • If DISTINCT is specified for LISTAGG, ORDER BY must be specified and the first sort-key of the ORDER BY specification must exactly match string-expression.
  • A fullselect that contains an invocation of LISTAGG cannot contain an ORDER BY clause.
  • A fullselect that contains an invocation of LISTAGG cannot contain a DISTINCT keyword in its SELECT list.
  • A SELECT clause that includes an invocation of the LISTAGG function must not also include an invocation of the ARRAY_AGG function or the XMLAGG function.

Example

Produce an alphabetical list of comma-separated names, grouped by department, from the sample employee table.

SELECT WORKDEPT,
 LISTAGG(LASTNAME, ', ') WITHIN GROUP(ORDER BY LASTNAME)
 AS EMPLOYEES
 FROM EMP
 GROUP BY WORKDEPT;

The following result is returned.

---------+---------+---------+---------+---------+---------+---------+---------+---------+-------
WORKDEPT  EMPLOYEES                                                             
---------+---------+---------+---------+---------+---------+---------+---------+---------+-------
A00       HAAS, HEMMINGER, LUCCHESI, O'CONNELL, ORLANDO                         
B01       THOMPSON                                                              
C01       KWAN, NATZ, NICHOLLS, QUINTANA                                        
D11       ADAMSON, BROWN, JOHN, JONES, LUTZ, PIANKA, SCOUTTEN, STERN, WALKER, YAMAMOTO, YOSHIMURA
D21       JEFFERSON, JOHNSON, MARINO, MONTEVERDE, PEREZ, PULASKI, SMITH         
E01       GEYER                                                                 
E11       HENDERSON, PARKER, SCHNEIDER, SCHWARTZ, SETRIGHT, SMITH, SPRINGER     
E21       ALONZO, GOUNOT, LEE, MEHTA, SPENSER, WONG                             
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