By Kardi Teknomo, PhD .

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Geometric Mean

Geometric mean is n-th root of product of data values.

Formula: Geometric Mean

Property of Geometric Mean

  • All data must be positive. Zero data value will produce zero Geometric mean. Negative data value leads to Complex number which commonly regarded as NaN (not a number) in the interactive program below


Geometric Mean

Geometric Mean

  • Geometric mean is scale invariant toward the product of the factor.

For example, we have two objects name A and B, which properties are given below.


Cost ($)

Time (Hour)







Now suppose we would like to make an index based on the two properties of cost and time. We consider geometric mean and arithmetic mean as the index as shown in the table below.

Notice that we are using the same properties; if we change the scale of the time from hour to minutes, arithmetic mean produces rank reversal while geometric index preserve the rank. This is one advantage of geometric mean compare to arithmetic mean

Object GM Index (sqrt($.hour)) AM Index ($+hour) GM Index (sqrt($.min)) AM Index ($+min)
A 4 (rank 1) 5 (rank 1) 30.98 (rank 1) 241 (rank 2)
B 5.48 (rank 2) 5.5 (rank 2) 42.43(rank 2) 182.5 (rank 1)

The interactive program below computes Geometric mean of a list of numbers separated by comma. Feel free to experiment with your own input values. What happen when you have zero or negative data input? Do you think Geometric mean is robust against outlier or susceptible to error?

Input list of positive numbers separated by comma, then press the button "Get Geometric Mean". The program will compute directly when you change the input data.

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See also: Lehmer mean

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