Converting Percents to Decimals

We already know that "percent" means per hundred.

This will help us to convert a percent to a decimal.

Example 1. Convert 35% to decimal.

Recall that percent is one hundredth.

So, 35% is 35 hundredth which is $$$\frac{{35}}{{100}}={0.35}$$$.

Answer: 0.35.

Next example.

Example 2. Convert 45.7% to decimal.

Just like in example 1 $$${45.7}\%=\frac{{{45.7}}}{{100}}={0.457}$$$.

Answer: 0.457.

Next example shows a bit easier way of converting.

Example 3. Convert 123.5% to decimal.

From previous two examples it is clear that we need to divide percent by 100 to get decimal.

But dividing by 100 is equivalent to moving the decimal point two places to the left:

123.5% becomes 1.235%.

Answer: 1.235%

Last example shows how to correctly move decimal point when there are not enough digits in the integer part.

Example 4. Convert 3.5% to decimal.

We need to move decimal point to the left, but there is only one digit in the integer part.

No problem. Recall, that you can add to integer part as much leading zeros as you want. We need only one.

So, 3.5 becomes 03.5. Now, you can move decimal point: 03.5 becomes .035 or 0.035.

Answer: 0.035%.

Let's summarize it.

To convert percents to decimal divide percent by 100 or, equivalently, move decimal point two places to the left.

Now, practice a bit.

Exercise 1. Convert 1200% to decimal.

Answer: 12.

Next exercise.

Exercise 2. Convert 156.8% to decimal.

Answer: 1.568.

Next exercise.

Exercise 3. Convert 45.7% to decimal.

Answer: 0.457%.

Next exercise.

Exercise 4. Convert 1.5% to decimal.

Answer: 0.015%.