statistics — Mathematical statistics functions
New in version 3.4.
Source code: Lib/statistics.py
This module provides functions for calculating mathematical statistics of numeric (
The module is not intended to be a competitor to third-party libraries such as NumPy, SciPy, or proprietary full-featured statistics packages aimed at professional statisticians such as Minitab, SAS and Matlab. It is aimed at the level of graphing and scientific calculators.
Unless explicitly noted, these functions support
Fraction. Behaviour with other types (whether in the numeric tower or not) is currently unsupported. Collections with a mix of types are also undefined and implementation-dependent. If your input data consists of mixed types, you may be able to use
map() to ensure a consistent result, for example:
Averages and measures of central location
These functions calculate an average or typical value from a population or sample.
Arithmetic mean (“average”) of data.
Fast, floating point arithmetic mean.
Geometric mean of data.
Harmonic mean of data.
Median (middle value) of data.
Low median of data.
High median of data.
Median, or 50th percentile, of grouped data.
Single mode (most common value) of discrete or nominal data.
List of modes (most common values) of discrete or nomimal data.
Divide data into intervals with equal probability.
Measures of spread
These functions calculate a measure of how much the population or sample tends to deviate from the typical or average values.
Population standard deviation of data.
Population variance of data.
Sample standard deviation of data.
Sample variance of data.
Note: The functions do not require the data given to them to be sorted. However, for reading convenience, most of the examples show sorted sequences.
Return the sample arithmetic mean of data which can be a sequence or iterable.
The arithmetic mean is the sum of the data divided by the number of data points. It is commonly called “the average”, although it is only one of many different mathematical averages. It is a measure of the central location of the data.
If data is empty,
StatisticsErrorwill be raised.
Some examples of use:pycon3
>>> mean([1, 2, 3, 4, 4]) 2.8 >>> mean([-1.0, 2.5, 3.25, 5.75]) 2.625 >>> from fractions import Fraction as F >>> mean([F(3, 7), F(1, 21), F(5, 3), F(1, 3)]) Fraction(13, 21) >>> from decimal import Decimal as D >>> mean([D("0.5"), D("0.75"), D("0.625"), D("0.375")]) Decimal('0.5625')
The mean is strongly affected by outliers and is not a robust estimator for central location: the mean is not necessarily a typical example of the data points. For more robust measures of central location, see
The sample mean gives an unbiased estimate of the true population mean, so that when taken on average over all the possible samples,
mean(sample)converges on the true mean of the entire population. If data represents the entire population rather than a sample, then
mean(data)is equivalent to calculating the true population mean μ.
Convert data to floats and compute the arithmetic mean.pycon3
>>> fmean([3.5, 4.0, 5.25]) 4.25
New in version 3.8.
Convert data to floats and compute the geometric mean.
The geometric mean indicates the central tendency or typical value of the data using the product of the values (as opposed to the arithmetic mean which uses their sum).
StatisticsErrorif the input dataset is empty, if it contains a zero, or if it contains a negative value. The data may be a sequence or iterable.
No special efforts are made to achieve exact results. (However, this may change in the future.)pycon3
>>> round(geometric_mean([54, 24, 36]), 1) 36.0
New in version 3.8.
Return the harmonic mean of data, a sequence or iterable of real-valued numbers.
The harmonic mean, sometimes called the subcontrary mean, is the reciprocal of the arithmetic
mean()of the reciprocals of the data. For example, the harmonic mean of three values a, b and c will be equivalent to
3/(1/a + 1/b + 1/c). If one of the values is zero, the result will be zero.
The harmonic mean is a type of average, a measure of the central location of the data. It is often appropriate when averaging rates or ratios, for example speeds.
Suppose a car travels 10 km at 40 km/hr, then another 10 km at 60 km/hr. What is the average speed?pycon3
>>> harmonic_mean([40, 60]) 48.0
Suppose an investor purchases an equal value of shares in each of three companies, with P/E (price/earning) ratios of 2.5, 3 and 10. What is the average P/E ratio for the investor’s portfolio?pycon3
>>> harmonic_mean([2.5, 3, 10]) # For an equal investment portfolio. 3.6
StatisticsErroris raised if data is empty, or any element is less than zero.
The current algorithm has an early-out when it encounters a zero in the input. This means that the subsequent inputs are not tested for validity. (This behavior may change in the future.)
New in version 3.6.
Return the median (middle value) of numeric data, using the common “mean of middle two” method. If data is empty,
StatisticsErroris raised. data can be a sequence or iterable.
The median is a robust measure of central location and is less affected by the presence of outliers. When the number of data points is odd, the middle data point is returned:pycon3
>>> median([1, 3, 5]) 3
When the number of data points is even, the median is interpolated by taking the average of the two middle values:pycon3
>>> median([1, 3, 5, 7]) 4.0
This is suited for when your data is discrete, and you don’t mind that the median may not be an actual data point.
Return the low median of numeric data. If data is empty,
StatisticsErroris raised. data can be a sequence or iterable.
The low median is always a member of the data set. When the number of data points is odd, the middle value is returned. When it is even, the smaller of the two middle values is returned.pycon3
>>> median_low([1, 3, 5]) 3 >>> median_low([1, 3, 5, 7]) 3
Use the low median when your data are discrete and you prefer the median to be an actual data point rather than interpolated.
Return the high median of data. If data is empty,
StatisticsErroris raised. data can be a sequence or iterable.
The high median is always a member of the data set. When the number of data points is odd, the middle value is returned. When it is even, the larger of the two middle values is returned.pycon3
>>> median_high([1, 3, 5]) 3 >>> median_high([1, 3, 5, 7]) 5
Use the high median when your data are discrete and you prefer the median to be an actual data point rather than interpolated.
Return the median of grouped continuous data, calculated as the 50th percentile, using interpolation. If data is empty,
StatisticsErroris raised. data can be a sequence or iterable.pycon3
>>> median_grouped([52, 52, 53, 54]) 52.5
In the following example, the data are rounded, so that each value represents the midpoint of data classes, e.g. 1 is the midpoint of the class 0.5–1.5, 2 is the midpoint of 1.5–2.5, 3 is the midpoint of 2.5–3.5, etc. With the data given, the middle value falls somewhere in the class 3.5–4.5, and interpolation is used to estimate it:pycon3
>>> median_grouped([1, 2, 2, 3, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 5]) 3.7
Optional argument interval represents the class interval, and defaults to 1. Changing the class interval naturally will change the interpolation:pycon3
>>> median_grouped([1, 3, 3, 5, 7], interval=1) 3.25 >>> median_grouped([1, 3, 3, 5, 7], interval=2) 3.5
This function does not check whether the data points are at least interval apart.
CPython implementation detail: Under some circumstances,
median_grouped()may coerce data points to floats. This behaviour is likely to change in the future.
Return the single most common data point from discrete or nominal data. The mode (when it exists) is the most typical value and serves as a measure of central location.
If there are multiple modes with the same frequency, returns the first one encountered in the data. If the smallest or largest of those is desired instead, use
max(multimode(data)). If the input data is empty,
modeassumes discrete data and returns a single value. This is the standard treatment of the mode as commonly taught in schools:pycon3
>>> mode([1, 1, 2, 3, 3, 3, 3, 4]) 3
The mode is unique in that it is the only statistic in this package that also applies to nominal (non-numeric) data:pycon3
>>> mode(["red", "blue", "blue", "red", "green", "red", "red"]) 'red'
Changed in version 3.8: Now handles multimodal datasets by returning the first mode encountered. Formerly, it raised
StatisticsErrorwhen more than one mode was found.
Return a list of the most frequently occurring values in the order they were first encountered in the data. Will return more than one result if there are multiple modes or an empty list if the data is empty:pycon3
>>> multimode('aabbbbccddddeeffffgg') ['b', 'd', 'f']'>>> multimode('') 
New in version 3.8.
Return the population standard deviation (the square root of the population variance). See
pvariance()for arguments and other details.pycon3
>>> pstdev([1.5, 2.5, 2.5, 2.75, 3.25, 4.75]) 0.986893273527251
Return the population variance of data, a non-empty sequence or iterable of real-valued numbers. Variance, or second moment about the mean, is a measure of the variability (spread or dispersion) of data. A large variance indicates that the data is spread out; a small variance indicates it is clustered closely around the mean.
If the optional second argument mu is given, it is typically the mean of the data. It can also be used to compute the second moment around a point that is not the mean. If it is missing or
None(the default), the arithmetic mean is automatically calculated.
Use this function to calculate the variance from the entire population. To estimate the variance from a sample, the
variance()function is usually a better choice.
StatisticsErrorif data is empty.
>>> data = [0.0, 0.25, 0.25, 1.25, 1.5, 1.75, 2.75, 3.25] >>> pvariance(data) 1.25
If you have already calculated the mean of your data, you can pass it as the optional second argument mu to avoid recalculation:pycon3
>>> mu = mean(data) >>> pvariance(data, mu) 1.25
Decimals and Fractions are supported:pycon3
>>> from decimal import Decimal as D >>> pvariance([D("27.5"), D("30.25"), D("30.25"), D("34.5"), D("41.75")]) Decimal('24.815') >>> from fractions import Fraction as F >>> pvariance([F(1, 4), F(5, 4), F(1, 2)]) Fraction(13, 72)
When called with the entire population, this gives the population variance σ². When called on a sample instead, this is the biased sample variance s², also known as variance with N degrees of freedom.
If you somehow know the true population mean μ, you may use this function to calculate the variance of a sample, giving the known population mean as the second argument. Provided the data points are a random sample of the population, the result will be an unbiased estimate of the population variance.
Return the sample standard deviation (the square root of the sample variance). See
variance()for arguments and other details.pycon3
>>> stdev([1.5, 2.5, 2.5, 2.75, 3.25, 4.75]) 1.0810874155219827
Return the sample variance of data, an iterable of at least two real-valued numbers. Variance, or second moment about the mean, is a measure of the variability (spread or dispersion) of data. A large variance indicates that the data is spread out; a small variance indicates it is clustered closely around the mean.
If the optional second argument xbar is given, it should be the mean of data. If it is missing or
None(the default), the mean is automatically calculated.
Use this function when your data is a sample from a population. To calculate the variance from the entire population, see
StatisticsErrorif data has fewer than two values.
>>> data = [2.75, 1.75, 1.25, 0.25, 0.5, 1.25, 3.5] >>> variance(data) 1.3720238095238095
If you have already calculated the mean of your data, you can pass it as the optional second argument xbar to avoid recalculation:pycon3
>>> m = mean(data) >>> variance(data, m) 1.3720238095238095
This function does not attempt to verify that you have passed the actual mean as xbar. Using arbitrary values for xbar can lead to invalid or impossible results.
Decimal and Fraction values are supported:pycon3
>>> from decimal import Decimal as D >>> variance([D("27.5"), D("30.25"), D("30.25"), D("34.5"), D("41.75")]) Decimal('31.01875') >>> from fractions import Fraction as F >>> variance([F(1, 6), F(1, 2), F(5, 3)]) Fraction(67, 108)
This is the sample variance s² with Bessel’s correction, also known as variance with N-1 degrees of freedom. Provided that the data points are representative (e.g. independent and identically distributed), the result should be an unbiased estimate of the true population variance.
If you somehow know the actual population mean μ you should pass it to the
pvariance()function as the mu parameter to get the variance of a sample.
statistics.quantiles(data, *, n=4, method='exclusive')
Divide data into n continuous intervals with equal probability. Returns a list of
n - 1cut points separating the intervals.
Set n to 4 for quartiles (the default). Set n to 10 for deciles. Set n to 100 for percentiles which gives the 99 cuts points that separate data into 100 equal sized groups. Raises
StatisticsErrorif n is not least 1.
The data can be any iterable containing sample data. For meaningful results, the number of data points in data should be larger than n. Raises
StatisticsErrorif there are not at least two data points.
The cut points are linearly interpolated from the two nearest data points. For example, if a cut point falls one-third of the distance between two sample values,
112, the cut-point will evaluate to
The method for computing quantiles can be varied depending on whether the data includes or excludes the lowest and highest possible values from the population.
The default method is “exclusive” and is used for data sampled from a population that can have more extreme values than found in the samples. The portion of the population falling below the i-th of m sorted data points is computed as
i / (m + 1). Given nine sample values, the method sorts them and assigns the following percentiles: 10%, 20%, 30%, 40%, 50%, 60%, 70%, 80%, 90%.
Setting the method to “inclusive” is used for describing population data or for samples that are known to include the most extreme values from the population. The minimum value in data is treated as the 0th percentile and the maximum value is treated as the 100th percentile. The portion of the population falling below the i-th of m sorted data points is computed as
(i - 1) / (m - 1). Given 11 sample values, the method sorts them and assigns the following percentiles: 0%, 10%, 20%, 30%, 40%, 50%, 60%, 70%, 80%, 90%, 100%.pycon3
# Decile cut points for empirically sampled data >>> data = [105, 129, 87, 86, 111, 111, 89, 81, 108, 92, 110, ... 100, 75, 105, 103, 109, 76, 119, 99, 91, 103, 129, ... 106, 101, 84, 111, 74, 87, 86, 103, 103, 106, 86, ... 111, 75, 87, 102, 121, 111, 88, 89, 101, 106, 95, ... 103, 107, 101, 81, 109, 104] >>> [round(q, 1) for q in quantiles(data, n=10)] [81.0, 86.2, 89.0, 99.4, 102.5, 103.6, 106.0, 109.8, 111.0]
New in version 3.8.
A single exception is defined:
ValueErrorfor statistics-related exceptions.
Normal distributions arise from the Central Limit Theorem and have a wide range of applications in statistics.
class statistics.NormalDist(mu=0.0, sigma=1.0)
If sigma is negative, raises
A read-only property for the arithmetic mean of a normal distribution.
A read-only property for the median of a normal distribution.
A read-only property for the mode of a normal distribution.
A read-only property for the standard deviation of a normal distribution.
A read-only property for the variance of a normal distribution. Equal to the square of the standard deviation.
The data can be any iterable and should consist of values that can be converted to type
float. If data does not contain at least two elements, raises
StatisticsErrorbecause it takes at least one point to estimate a central value and at least two points to estimate dispersion.
samples(n, *, seed=None)
If seed is given, creates a new instance of the underlying random number generator. This is useful for creating reproducible results, even in a multi-threading context.
Using a probability density function (pdf), compute the relative likelihood that a random variable X will be near the given value x. Mathematically, it is the limit of the ratio
P(x <= X < x+dx) / dxas dx approaches zero.
The relative likelihood is computed as the probability of a sample occurring in a narrow range divided by the width of the range (hence the word “density”). Since the likelihood is relative to other points, its value can be greater than
Using a cumulative distribution function (cdf), compute the probability that a random variable X will be less than or equal to x. Mathematically, it is written
P(X <= x).
Finds the value x of the random variable X such that the probability of the variable being less than or equal to that value equals the given probability p.
Measures the agreement between two normal probability distributions. Returns a value between 0.0 and 1.0 giving the overlapping area for the two probability density functions.
Divide the normal distribution into n continuous intervals with equal probability. Returns a list of (n - 1) cut points separating the intervals.
Set n to 4 for quartiles (the default). Set n to 10 for deciles. Set n to 100 for percentiles which gives the 99 cuts points that separate the normal distribution into 100 equal sized groups.
Compute the Standard Score describing x in terms of the number of standard deviations above or below the mean of the normal distribution:
(x - mean) / stdev.
New in version 3.9.
NormalDistsupport addition, subtraction, multiplication and division by a constant. These operations are used for translation and scaling. For example:pycon3
>>> temperature_february = NormalDist(5, 2.5) # Celsius >>> temperature_february * (9/5) + 32 # Fahrenheit NormalDist(mu=41.0, sigma=4.5)
Dividing a constant by an instance of
NormalDistis not supported because the result wouldn’t be normally distributed.
Since normal distributions arise from additive effects of independent variables, it is possible to add and subtract two independent normally distributed random variables represented as instances of
NormalDist. For example:pycon3
>>> birth_weights = NormalDist.from_samples([2.5, 3.1, 2.1, 2.4, 2.7, 3.5]) >>> drug_effects = NormalDist(0.4, 0.15) >>> combined = birth_weights + drug_effects >>> round(combined.mean, 1) 3.1 >>> round(combined.stdev, 1) 0.5
New in version 3.8.
NormalDist Examples and Recipes
NormalDist readily solves classic probability problems.
For example, given historical data for SAT exams showing that scores are normally distributed with a mean of 1060 and a standard deviation of 195, determine the percentage of students with test scores between 1100 and 1200, after rounding to the nearest whole number:
>>> sat = NormalDist(1060, 195) >>> fraction = sat.cdf(1200 + 0.5) - sat.cdf(1100 - 0.5) >>> round(fraction * 100.0, 1) 18.4
>>> list(map(round, sat.quantiles())) [928, 1060, 1192] >>> list(map(round, sat.quantiles(n=10))) [810, 896, 958, 1011, 1060, 1109, 1162, 1224, 1310]
>>> def model(x, y, z): ... return (3*x + 7*x*y - 5*y) / (11 * z) ... >>> n = 100_000 >>> X = NormalDist(10, 2.5).samples(n, seed=3652260728) >>> Y = NormalDist(15, 1.75).samples(n, seed=4582495471) >>> Z = NormalDist(50, 1.25).samples(n, seed=6582483453) >>> quantiles(map(model, X, Y, Z)) [1.4591308524824727, 1.8035946855390597, 2.175091447274739]
Normal distributions can be used to approximate Binomial distributions when the sample size is large and when the probability of a successful trial is near 50%.
For example, an open source conference has 750 attendees and two rooms with a 500 person capacity. There is a talk about Python and another about Ruby. In previous conferences, 65% of the attendees preferred to listen to Python talks. Assuming the population preferences haven’t changed, what is the probability that the Python room will stay within its capacity limits?
>>> n = 750 # Sample size >>> p = 0.65 # Preference for Python >>> q = 1.0 - p # Preference for Ruby >>> k = 500 # Room capacity >>> # Approximation using the cumulative normal distribution >>> from math import sqrt >>> round(NormalDist(mu=n*p, sigma=sqrt(n*p*q)).cdf(k + 0.5), 4) 0.8402 >>> # Solution using the cumulative binomial distribution >>> from math import comb, fsum >>> round(fsum(comb(n, r) * p**r * q**(n-r) for r in range(k+1)), 4) 0.8402 >>> # Approximation using a simulation >>> from random import seed, choices >>> seed(8675309) >>> def trial(): ... return choices(('Python', 'Ruby'), (p, q), k=n).count('Python') >>> mean(trial() <= k for i in range(10_000)) 0.8398
Normal distributions commonly arise in machine learning problems.
Wikipedia has a nice example of a Naive Bayesian Classifier. The challenge is to predict a person’s gender from measurements of normally distributed features including height, weight, and foot size.
We’re given a training dataset with measurements for eight people. The measurements are assumed to be normally distributed, so we summarize the data with
>>> height_male = NormalDist.from_samples([6, 5.92, 5.58, 5.92]) >>> height_female = NormalDist.from_samples([5, 5.5, 5.42, 5.75]) >>> weight_male = NormalDist.from_samples([180, 190, 170, 165]) >>> weight_female = NormalDist.from_samples([100, 150, 130, 150]) >>> foot_size_male = NormalDist.from_samples([12, 11, 12, 10]) >>> foot_size_female = NormalDist.from_samples([6, 8, 7, 9])
Next, we encounter a new person whose feature measurements are known but whose gender is unknown:
>>> ht = 6.0 # height >>> wt = 130 # weight >>> fs = 8 # foot size
Starting with a 50% prior probability of being male or female, we compute the posterior as the prior times the product of likelihoods for the feature measurements given the gender:
>>> prior_male = 0.5 >>> prior_female = 0.5 >>> posterior_male = (prior_male * height_male.pdf(ht) * ... weight_male.pdf(wt) * foot_size_male.pdf(fs)) >>> posterior_female = (prior_female * height_female.pdf(ht) * ... weight_female.pdf(wt) * foot_size_female.pdf(fs))
The final prediction goes to the largest posterior. This is known as the maximum a posteriori or MAP:
>>> 'male' if posterior_male > posterior_female else 'female' 'female'
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