Format elements

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Google Standard SQL for BigQuery supports the following format elements.

Format elements for date and time parts

Many Google Standard SQL parsing and formatting functions rely on a format string to describe the format of parsed or formatted values. A format string represents the textual form of date and time and contains separate format elements that are applied left-to-right.

These functions use format strings:

Format strings generally support the following elements:

Format element Type Description Example
%A DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The full weekday name (English). Wednesday
%a DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The abbreviated weekday name (English). Wed
%B DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The full month name (English). January
%b DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The abbreviated month name (English). Jan
%C DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The century (a year divided by 100 and truncated to an integer) as a decimal number (00-99). 20
%c DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The date and time representation (English). Wed Jan 20 21:47:00 2021
%D DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The date in the format %m/%d/%y. 01/20/21
%d DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The day of the month as a decimal number (01-31). 20
%e DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The day of month as a decimal number (1-31); single digits are preceded by a space. 20
%F DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The date in the format %Y-%m-%d. 2021-01-20
%G DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The ISO 8601 year with century as a decimal number. Each ISO year begins on the Monday before the first Thursday of the Gregorian calendar year. Note that %G and %Y may produce different results near Gregorian year boundaries, where the Gregorian year and ISO year can diverge. 2021
%g DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The ISO 8601 year without century as a decimal number (00-99). Each ISO year begins on the Monday before the first Thursday of the Gregorian calendar year. Note that %g and %y may produce different results near Gregorian year boundaries, where the Gregorian year and ISO year can diverge. 21
%H TIME
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The hour (24-hour clock) as a decimal number (00-23). 21
%h DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The abbreviated month name (English). Jan
%I TIME
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The hour (12-hour clock) as a decimal number (01-12). 09
%J DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The ISO 8601 1-based day of the year (001-364 or 001-371 days). If the ISO year is not set, this format element is ignored. 364
%j DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The day of the year as a decimal number (001-366). 020
%k TIME
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The hour (24-hour clock) as a decimal number (0-23); single digits are preceded by a space. 21
%l TIME
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The hour (12-hour clock) as a decimal number (1-12); single digits are preceded by a space. 9
%M TIME
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The minute as a decimal number (00-59). 47
%m DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The month as a decimal number (01-12). 01
%n All A newline character.
%P TIME
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
When formatting, this is either am or pm.
This cannot be used with parsing. Instead, use %p.
pm
%p TIME
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
When formatting, this is either AM or PM.
When parsing, this can be used with am, pm, AM, or PM.
PM
%Q DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The quarter as a decimal number (1-4). 1
%R TIME
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The time in the format %H:%M. 21:47
%S TIME
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The second as a decimal number (00-60). 00
%s TIME
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The number of seconds since 1970-01-01 00:00:00. Always overrides all other format elements, independent of where %s appears in the string. If multiple %s elements appear, then the last one takes precedence. 1611179220
%T TIME
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The time in the format %H:%M:%S. 21:47:00
%t All A tab character.
%U DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The week number of the year (Sunday as the first day of the week) as a decimal number (00-53). 03
%u DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The weekday (Monday as the first day of the week) as a decimal number (1-7). 3
%V DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The ISO 8601 week number of the year (Monday as the first day of the week) as a decimal number (01-53). If the week containing January 1 has four or more days in the new year, then it is week 1; otherwise it is week 53 of the previous year, and the next week is week 1. 03
%W DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The week number of the year (Monday as the first day of the week) as a decimal number (00-53). 03
%w DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The weekday (Sunday as the first day of the week) as a decimal number (0-6). 3
%X TIME
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The time representation in HH:MM:SS format. 21:47:00
%x DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The date representation in MM/DD/YY format. 01/20/21
%Y DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The year with century as a decimal number. 2021
%y DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
The year without century as a decimal number (00-99), with an optional leading zero. Can be mixed with %C. If %C is not specified, years 00-68 are 2000s, while years 69-99 are 1900s. 21
%Z TIMESTAMP
The time zone name. UTC-5
%z TIMESTAMP
The offset from the Prime Meridian in the format +HHMM or -HHMM as appropriate, with positive values representing locations east of Greenwich. -0500
%% All A single % character. %
%Ez TIMESTAMP
RFC 3339-compatible numeric time zone (+HH:MM or -HH:MM). -05:00
%E<number>S TIME
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
Seconds with <number> digits of fractional precision. 00.000 for %E3S
%E*S TIME
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
Seconds with full fractional precision (a literal '*'). 00.123456
%E4Y DATE
DATETIME
TIMESTAMP
Four-character years (0001 ... 9999). Note that %Y produces as many characters as it takes to fully render the year. 2021

Examples:

SELECT FORMAT_DATE("%b-%d-%Y", DATE "2008-12-25") AS formatted;

+-------------+
| formatted   |
+-------------+
| Dec-25-2008 |
+-------------+
SELECT
  FORMAT_DATETIME("%c", DATETIME "2008-12-25 15:30:00")
  AS formatted;

+--------------------------+
| formatted                |
+--------------------------+
| Thu Dec 25 15:30:00 2008 |
+--------------------------+
SELECT FORMAT_TIME("%R", TIME "15:30:00") as formatted_time;

+----------------+
| formatted_time |
+----------------+
| 15:30          |
+----------------+
SELECT FORMAT_TIMESTAMP("%b %Y %Ez", TIMESTAMP "2008-12-25 15:30:00+00")
  AS formatted;

+-----------------+
| formatted       |
+-----------------+
| Dec 2008 +00:00 |
+-----------------+
SELECT PARSE_DATE("%Y%m%d", "20081225") AS parsed;

+------------+
| parsed     |
+------------+
| 2008-12-25 |
+------------+
SELECT PARSE_DATETIME('%Y-%m-%d %H:%M:%S', '1998-10-18 13:45:55') AS datetime;

+---------------------+
| datetime            |
+---------------------+
| 1998-10-18T13:45:55 |
+---------------------+
SELECT PARSE_TIME('%I:%M:%S %p', '2:23:38 pm') AS parsed_time

+-------------+
| parsed_time |
+-------------+
| 14:23:38    |
+-------------+
SELECT PARSE_TIMESTAMP("%c", "Thu Dec 25 07:30:00 2008") AS parsed;

-- Display of results may differ, depending upon the environment and
-- time zone where this query was executed.
+-------------------------+
| parsed                  |
+-------------------------+
| 2008-12-25 07:30:00 UTC |
+-------------------------+

Format clause for CAST

format_clause:
  FORMAT format_model

format_model:
  format_string_expression

The format clause can be used in some CAST functions. You use a format clause to provide instructions for how to conduct a cast. For example, you could instruct a cast to convert a sequence of bytes to a BASE64-encoded string instead of a UTF-8-encoded string.

The format clause includes a format model. The format model can contain format elements combined together as a format string.

Format bytes as string

CAST(bytes_expression AS STRING FORMAT format_string_expression)

You can cast a sequence of bytes to a string with a format element in the format string. If the bytes cannot be formatted with a format element, an error is returned. If the sequence of bytes is NULL, the result is NULL. Format elements are case-insensitive.

Format element Returns Example
HEX Converts a sequence of bytes into a hexadecimal string. Input: b'\x00\x01\xEF\xFF'
Output: 0001efff
BASEX Converts a sequence of bytes into a BASEX encoded string. X represents one of these numbers: 2, 8, 16, 32, 64. Input as BASE8: b'\x02\x11\x3B'
Output: 00410473
BASE64M Converts a sequence of bytes into a BASE64-encoded string based on rfc 2045 for MIME. Generates a newline character ("\n") every 76 characters. Input: b'\xde\xad\xbe\xef'
Output: 3q2+7w==
ASCII Converts a sequence of bytes that are ASCII values to a string. If the input contains bytes that are not a valid ASCII encoding, an error is returned. Input: b'\x48\x65\x6c\x6c\x6f'
Output: Hello
UTF-8 Converts a sequence of bytes that are UTF-8 values to a string. If the input contains bytes that are not a valid UTF-8 encoding, an error is returned. Input: b'\x24'
Output: $
UTF8 Same behavior as UTF-8.

Return type

STRING

Example

SELECT CAST(b'\x48\x65\x6c\x6c\x6f' AS STRING FORMAT 'ASCII') AS bytes_to_string;

+-----------------+
| bytes_to_string |
+-----------------+
| Hello           |
+-----------------+

Format string as bytes

CAST(string_expression AS BYTES FORMAT format_string_expression)

You can cast a string to bytes with a format element in the format string. If the string cannot be formatted with the format element, an error is returned. Format elements are case-insensitive.

In the string expression, whitespace characters, such as \n, are ignored if the BASE64 or BASE64M format element is used.

Format element Returns Example
HEX Converts a hexadecimal-encoded string to bytes. If the input contains characters that are not part of the HEX encoding alphabet (0~9, case-insensitive a~f), an error is returned. Input: '0001efff'
Output: b'\x00\x01\xEF\xFF'
BASEX Converts a BASEX-encoded string to bytes. X represents one of these numbers: 2, 8, 16, 32, 64. An error is returned if the input contains characters that are not part of the BASEX encoding alphabet, except whitespace characters if the format element is BASE64. Input as BASE8: '00410473'
Output: b'\x02\x11\x3B'
BASE64M Converts a BASE64-encoded string to bytes. If the input contains characters that are not whitespace and not part of the BASE64 encoding alphabet defined at rfc 2045, an error is returned. BASE64M and BASE64 decoding have the same behavior. Input: '3q2+7w=='
Output: b'\xde\xad\xbe\xef'
ASCII Converts a string with only ASCII characters to bytes. If the input contains characters that are not ASCII characters, an error is returned. Input: 'Hello'
Output: b'\x48\x65\x6c\x6c\x6f'
UTF-8 Converts a string to a sequence of UTF-8 bytes. Input: '$'
Output: b'\x24'
UTF8 Same behavior as UTF-8.

Return type

BYTES

Example

SELECT CAST('Hello' AS BYTES FORMAT 'ASCII') AS string_to_bytes

+-------------------------+
| string_to_bytes         |
+-------------------------+
| b'\x48\x65\x6c\x6c\x6f' |
+-------------------------+

Format date and time as string

You can format these date and time parts as a string:

Case matching is supported when you format some date or time parts as a string and the output contains letters. To learn more, see Case matching.

Case matching

When the output of some format element contains letters, the letter cases of the output is matched with the letter cases of the format element, meaning the words in the output are capitalized according to how the format element is capitalized. This is called case matching. The rules are:

  • If the first two letters of the element are both upper case, the words in the output are capitalized. For example DAY = THURSDAY.
  • If the first letter of the element is upper case, and the second letter is lowercase, the first letter of each word in the output is capitalized and other letters are lowercase. For example Day = Thursday.
  • If the first letter of the element is lowercase, then all letters in the output are lowercase. For example, day = thursday.

Format year part as string

CAST(expression AS STRING FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a data type that contains the year part to a string. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • expression: This expression contains the data type with the year that you need to format.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the year format element.

These data types include a year part:

  • DATE
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

If expression or format_string_expression is NULL the return value is NULL. If format_string_expression is an empty string, the output is an empty string. An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
YYYY Year, 4 or more digits. Input: DATE '2018-01-30'
Output: 2018
Input: DATE '76-01-30'
Output: 0076
Input: DATE '10000-01-30'
Output: 10000
YYY Year, last 3 digits only. Input: DATE '2018-01-30'
Output: 018
Input: DATE '98-01-30'
Output: 098
YY Year, last 2 digits only. Input: DATE '2018-01-30'
Output: 18
Input: DATE '8-01-30'
Output: 08
Y Year, last digit only. Input: DATE '2018-01-30'
Output: 8
RRRR Same behavior as YYYY.
RR Same behavior as YY.

Return type

STRING

Example

SELECT CAST(DATE '2018-01-30' AS STRING FORMAT 'YYYY') AS date_time_to_string;

+---------------------+
| date_time_to_string |
+---------------------+
| 2018                |
+---------------------+

Format month part as string

CAST(expression AS STRING FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a data type that contains the month part to a string. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • expression: This expression contains the data type with the month that you need to format.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the month format element.

These data types include a month part:

  • DATE
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

If expression or format_string_expression is NULL the return value is NULL. If format_string_expression is an empty string, the output is an empty string. An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
MM Month, 2 digits. Input: DATE '2018-01-30'
Output: 01
MON Abbreviated, 3-character name of the month. The abbreviated month names for locale en-US are: JAN, FEB, MAR, APR, MAY, JUN, JUL, AUG, SEP, OCT, NOV, DEC. Case matching is supported. Input: DATE '2018-01-30'
Output: JAN
MONTH Name of the month. Case matching is supported. Input: DATE '2018-01-30'
Output: JANUARY

Return type

STRING

Example

SELECT CAST(DATE '2018-01-30' AS STRING FORMAT 'MONTH') AS date_time_to_string;

+---------------------+
| date_time_to_string |
+---------------------+
| JANUARY             |
+---------------------+

Format day part as string

CAST(expression AS STRING FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a data type that contains the day part to a string. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • expression: This expression contains the data type with the day that you need to format.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the day format element.

These data types include a day part:

  • DATE
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

If expression or format_string_expression is NULL the return value is NULL. If format_string_expression is an empty string, the output is an empty string. An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
DAY Name of the day of the week, localized. Spaces are padded on the right side to make the output size exactly 9. Case matching is supported. Input: DATE '2020-12-31'
Output: THURSDAY
DY Abbreviated, 3-character name of the weekday, localized. The abbreviated weekday names for locale en-US are: MON, TUE, WED, THU, FRI, SAT, SUN. Case matching is supported. Input: DATE '2020-12-31'
Output: THU
D Day of the week (1 to 7), starting with Sunday as 1. Input: DATE '2020-12-31'
Output: 4
DD 2-digit day of the month. Input: DATE '2018-12-02'
Output: 02
DDD 3-digit day of the year. Input: DATE '2018-02-03'
Output: 034

Return type

STRING

Example

SELECT CAST(DATE '2018-02-15' AS STRING FORMAT 'DD') AS date_time_to_string;

+---------------------+
| date_time_to_string |
+---------------------+
| 15                  |
+---------------------+

Format hour part as string

CAST(expression AS STRING FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a data type that contains the hour part to a string. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • expression: This expression contains the data type with the hour that you need to format.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the hour format element.

These data types include a hour part:

  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

If expression or format_string_expression is NULL the return value is NULL. If format_string_expression is an empty string, the output is an empty string. An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
HH Hour of the day, 12-hour clock, 2 digits. Input: TIME '21:30:00'
Output: 09
HH12 Hour of the day, 12-hour clock. Input: TIME '21:30:00'
Output: 09
HH24 Hour of the day, 24-hour clock, 2 digits. Input: TIME '21:30:00'
Output: 21

Return type

STRING

Examples

SELECT CAST(TIME '21:30:00' AS STRING FORMAT 'HH24') AS date_time_to_string;

+---------------------+
| date_time_to_string |
+---------------------+
| 21                  |
+---------------------+
SELECT CAST(TIME '21:30:00' AS STRING FORMAT 'HH12') AS date_time_to_string;

+---------------------+
| date_time_to_string |
+---------------------+
| 09                  |
+---------------------+

Format minute part as string

CAST(expression AS STRING FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a data type that contains the minute part to a string. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • expression: This expression contains the data type with the minute that you need to format.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the minute format element.

These data types include a minute part:

  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

If expression or format_string_expression is NULL the return value is NULL. If format_string_expression is an empty string, the output is an empty string. An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
MI Minute, 2 digits. Input: TIME '01:02:03'
Output: 02

Return type

STRING

Example

SELECT CAST(TIME '21:30:00' AS STRING FORMAT 'MI') AS date_time_to_string;

+---------------------+
| date_time_to_string |
+---------------------+
| 30                  |
+---------------------+

Format second part as string

CAST(expression AS STRING FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a data type that contains the second part to a string. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • expression: This expression contains the data type with the second that you need to format.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the second format element.

These data types include a second part:

  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

If expression or format_string_expression is NULL the return value is NULL. If format_string_expression is an empty string, the output is an empty string. An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
SS Seconds of the minute, 2 digits. Input: TIME '01:02:03'
Output: 03
SSSSS Seconds of the day, 5 digits. Input: TIME '01:02:03'
Output: 03723
FFn Fractional part of the second, n digits long. Replace n with a value from 1 to 9. For example, FF5. The fractional part of the second is rounded to fit the size of the output. Input for FF1: TIME '01:05:07.16'
Output: 1
Input for FF2: TIME '01:05:07.16'
Output: 16
Input for FF3: TIME '01:05:07.16'
Output: 016

Return type

STRING

Examples

SELECT CAST(TIME '21:30:25.16' AS STRING FORMAT 'SS') AS date_time_to_string;

+---------------------+
| date_time_to_string |
+---------------------+
| 25                  |
+---------------------+
SELECT CAST(TIME '21:30:25.16' AS STRING FORMAT 'FF2') AS date_time_to_string;

+---------------------+
| date_time_to_string |
+---------------------+
| 16                  |
+---------------------+

Format meridian indicator part as string

CAST(expression AS STRING FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a data type that contains the meridian indicator part to a string. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • expression: This expression contains the data type with the meridian indicator that you need to format.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the meridian indicator format element.

These data types include a meridian indicator part:

  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

If expression or format_string_expression is NULL the return value is NULL. If format_string_expression is an empty string, the output is an empty string. An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
A.M. A.M. if the time is less than 12, otherwise P.M. The letter case of the output is determined by the first letter case of the format element. Input for A.M.: TIME '01:02:03'
Output: A.M.
Input for A.M.: TIME '16:02:03'
Output: P.M.
Input for a.m.: TIME '01:02:03'
Output: a.m.
Input for a.M.: TIME '01:02:03'
Output: a.m.
AM AM if the time is less than 12, otherwise PM. The letter case of the output is determined by the first letter case of the format element. Input for AM: TIME '01:02:03'
Output: AM
Input for AM: TIME '16:02:03'
Output: PM
Input for am: TIME '01:02:03'
Output: am
Input for aM: TIME '01:02:03'
Output: am
P.M. Output is the same as A.M. format element.
PM Output is the same as AM format element.

Return type

STRING

Examples

SELECT CAST(TIME '21:30:00' AS STRING FORMAT 'AM') AS date_time_to_string;
SELECT CAST(TIME '21:30:00' AS STRING FORMAT 'PM') AS date_time_to_string;

+---------------------+
| date_time_to_string |
+---------------------+
| PM                  |
+---------------------+
SELECT CAST(TIME '01:30:00' AS STRING FORMAT 'AM') AS date_time_to_string;
SELECT CAST(TIME '01:30:00' AS STRING FORMAT 'PM') AS date_time_to_string;

+---------------------+
| date_time_to_string |
+---------------------+
| AM                  |
+---------------------+

Format time zone part as string

CAST(expression AS STRING FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a data type that contains the time zone part to a string. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • expression: This expression contains the data type with the time zone that you need to format.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the time zone format element.

These data types include a time zone part:

  • DATE
  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

If expression or format_string_expression is NULL the return value is NULL. If format_string_expression is an empty string, the output is an empty string. An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
TZH Hour offset for a time zone. This includes the +/- sign and 2-digit hour. Inputstamp: TIMESTAMP '2008-12-25 05:30:00+00' Output: −08
TZM Minute offset for a time zone. This includes only the 2-digit minute. Inputstamp: TIMESTAMP '2008-12-25 05:30:00+00' Output: 00

Return type

STRING

Examples

SELECT CAST(TIMESTAMP '2008-12-25 00:00:00+00:00' AS STRING FORMAT 'TZH') AS date_time_to_string;

-- Results depend upon where this query was executed.
+---------------------+
| date_time_to_string |
+---------------------+
| -08                 |
+---------------------+
SELECT CAST(TIMESTAMP '2008-12-25 00:00:00+00:00' AS STRING FORMAT 'TZH' AT TIME ZONE 'Asia/Kolkata')
AS date_time_to_string;

-- Because the time zone is specified, the result is always the same.
+---------------------+
| date_time_to_string |
+---------------------+
| +05                 |
+---------------------+
SELECT CAST(TIMESTAMP '2008-12-25 00:00:00+00:00' AS STRING FORMAT 'TZM') AS date_time_to_string;

-- Results depend upon where this query was executed.
+---------------------+
| date_time_to_string |
+---------------------+
| 00                  |
+---------------------+
SELECT CAST(TIMESTAMP '2008-12-25 00:00:00+00:00' AS STRING FORMAT 'TZM' AT TIME ZONE 'Asia/Kolkata')
AS date_time_to_string;

-- Because the time zone is specified, the result is always the same.
+---------------------+
| date_time_to_string |
+---------------------+
| 30                  |
+---------------------+

Format literal as string

CAST(expression AS STRING FORMAT format_string_expression)
Format element Returns Example
- Output is the same as the input. -
. Output is the same as the input. .
/ Output is the same as the input. /
, Output is the same as the input. ,
' Output is the same as the input. '
; Output is the same as the input. ;
: Output is the same as the input. :
Whitespace Output is the same as the input. Whitespace means the space character, ASCII 32. It does not mean other types of space like tab or new line. Any whitespace character that is not the ASCII 32 character in the format model generates an error.
"text" Output is the value within the double quotes. To preserve a double quote or backslash character, use the \" or \\ escape sequence. Other escape sequences are not supported. Input: "abc"
Output: abc
Input: "a\"b\\c"
Output: a"b\c

Format string as date and time

You can format a string with these date and time parts:

When formatting a string with date and time parts, you must follow the format model rules.

Format model rules

When casting a string to date and time parts, you must ensure the format model is valid. The format model represents the elements passed into CAST(string_expression AS type FORMAT format_string_expression) as the format_string_expression and is validated according to the following rules:

  • It contains at most one of each of the following parts: meridian indicator, year, month, day, hour.
  • A non-literal, non-whitespace format element cannot appear more than once.
  • If it contains the day of year format element, DDD, then it cannot contain the month.
  • If it contains the 24-hour format element, HH24, then it cannot contain the 12-hour format element or a meridian indicator.
  • If it contains the 12-hour format element, HH12 or HH, then it must also contain a meridian indicator.
  • If it contains a meridian indicator, then it must also contain a 12-hour format element.
  • If it contains the second of the day format element, SSSSS, then it cannot contain any of the following: hour, minute, second, or meridian indicator.
  • It cannot contain a format element such that the value it sets does not exist in the target type. For example, an hour format element such as HH24 cannot appear in a string you are casting as a DATE.

Format string as year part

CAST(string_expression AS type FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a string-formatted year to a data type that contains the year part. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • string_expression: This expression contains the string with the year that you need to format.
  • type: The data type to which you are casting. Must include the year part.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the year format element. The formats elements in this string are defined collectively as the format model, which must follow these rules.

These data types include a year part:

  • DATE
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

If the YEAR part is missing from string_expression and the return type includes this part, YEAR is set to the current year.

An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or string_expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
YYYY If it is delimited, matches 1 to 5 digits. If it is not delimited, matches 4 digits. Sets the year part to the matched number. Input for MM-DD-YYYY: '03-12-2018'
Output as DATE: 2018-12-03
Input for YYYY-MMDD: '10000-1203'
Output as DATE: 10000-12-03
Input for YYYY: '18'
Output as DATE: 2018-03-01 (Assume current date is March 23, 2021)
YYY Matches 3 digits. Sets the last 3 digits of the year part to the matched number. Input for YYY-MM-DD: '018-12-03'
Output as DATE: 2018-12-03
Input for YYY-MM-DD: '038-12-03'
Output as DATE: 2038-12-03
YY Matches 2 digits. Sets the last 2 digits of the year part to the matched number. Input for YY-MM-DD: '18-12-03'
Output as DATE: 2018-12-03
Input for YY-MM-DD: '38-12-03'
Output as DATE: 2038-12-03
Y Matches 1 digit. Sets the last digit of the year part to the matched number. Input for Y-MM-DD: '8-12-03'
Output as DATE: 2008-12-03
Y,YYY Matches the pattern of 1 to 2 digits, comma, then exactly 3 digits. Sets the year part to the matched number. Input for Y,YYY-MM-DD: '2,018-12-03'
Output as DATE: 2008-12-03
RRRR Same behavior as YYYY.
RR

Matches 2 digits.

If the 2 digits entered are between 00 and 49 and the last 2 digits of the current year are between 00 and 49, the returned year has the same first 2 digits as the current year. If the last 2 digits of the current year are between 50 and 99, the first 2 digits of the returned year is 1 greater than the first 2 digits of the current year.

If the 2 digits entered are between 50 and 99 and the last 2 digits of the current year are between 00 and 49, the first 2 digits of the returned year are 1 less than the first 2 digits of the current year. If the last 2 digits of the current year are between 50 and 99, the returned year has the same first 2 digits as the current year.

Input for RR-MM-DD: '18-12-03'
Output as DATE: 2018-12-03 (executed in the year 2021) Output as DATE: 2118-12-03 (executed in the year 2050)
Input for RR-MM-DD: '50-12-03'
Output as DATE: 2050-12-03 (executed in the year 2021) Output as DATE: 2050-12-03 (executed in the year 2050)

Return type

The data type to which the string was cast. This can be:

  • DATE
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

Examples

SELECT CAST('18-12-03' AS DATE FORMAT 'YY-MM-DD') AS string_to_date

+----------------+
| string_to_date |
+----------------+
| 2018-02-03     |
+----------------+

Format string as month part

CAST(string_expression AS type FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a string-formatted month to a data type that contains the month part. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • string_expression: This expression contains the string with the month that you need to format.
  • type: The data type to which you are casting. Must include the month part.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the month format element. The formats elements in this string are defined collectively as the format model, which must follow these rules.

These data types include a month part:

  • DATE
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

If the MONTH part is missing from string_expression and the return type includes this part, MONTH is set to the current month.

An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or string_expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
MM Matches 2 digits. Sets the month part to the matched number. Input for MM-DD-YYYY: '03-12-2018'
Output as DATE: 2018-12-03
MON Matches 3 letters. Sets the month part to the matched string interpreted as the abbreviated name of the month. Input for MON DD, YYYY: 'DEC 03, 2018'
Output as DATE: 2018-12-03
MONTH Matches 9 letters. Sets the month part to the matched string interpreted as the name of the month. Input for MONTH DD, YYYY: 'DECEMBER 03, 2018'
Output as DATE: 2018-12-03

Return type

The data type to which the string was cast. This can be:

  • DATE
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

Examples

SELECT CAST('DEC 03, 2018' AS DATE FORMAT 'MON DD, YYYY') AS string_to_date

+----------------+
| string_to_date |
+----------------+
| 2018-12-03     |
+----------------+

Format string as day part

CAST(string_expression AS type FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a string-formatted day to a data type that contains the day part. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • string_expression: This expression contains the string with the day that you need to format.
  • type: The data type to which you are casting. Must include the day part.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the day format element. The formats elements in this string are defined collectively as the format model, which must follow these rules.

These data types include a day part:

  • DATE
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

If the DAY part is missing from string_expression and the return type includes this part, DAY is set to 1.

An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or string_expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
DD Matches 2 digits. Sets the day part to the matched number. Input for MONTH DD, YYYY: 'DECEMBER 03, 2018'
Output as DATE: 2018-12-03

Return type

The data type to which the string was cast. This can be:

  • DATE
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

Examples

SELECT CAST('DECEMBER 03, 2018' AS DATE FORMAT 'MONTH DD, YYYY') AS string_to_date

+----------------+
| string_to_date |
+----------------+
| 2018-12-03     |
+----------------+

Format string as hour part

CAST(string_expression AS type FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a string-formatted hour to a data type that contains the hour part. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • string_expression: This expression contains the string with the hour that you need to format.
  • type: The data type to which you are casting. Must include the hour part.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the hour format element. The formats elements in this string are defined collectively as the format model, which must follow these rules.

These data types include a hour part:

  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

If the HOUR part is missing from string_expression and the return type includes this part, HOUR is set to 0.

An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or string_expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
HH Matches 2 digits. If the matched number n is 12, sets temp = 0; otherwise, sets temp = n. If the matched value of the A.M./P.M. format element is P.M., sets temp = n + 12. Sets the hour part to temp. A meridian indicator must be present in the format model, when HH is present. Input for HH:MI P.M.: '03:30 P.M.'
Output as TIME: 15:30:00
HH12 Same behavior as HH.
HH24 Matches 2 digits. Sets the hour part to the matched number. Input for HH24:MI: '15:30'
Output as TIME: 15:30:00

Return type

The data type to which the string was cast. This can be:

  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

Examples

SELECT CAST('15:30' AS TIME FORMAT 'HH24:MI') AS string_to_date_time

+---------------------+
| string_to_date_time |
+---------------------+
| 15:30:00            |
+---------------------+

Format string as minute part

CAST(string_expression AS type FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a string-formatted minute to a data type that contains the minute part. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • string_expression: This expression contains the string with the minute that you need to format.
  • type: The data type to which you are casting. Must include the minute part.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the minute format element. The formats elements in this string are defined collectively as the format model, which must follow these rules.

These data types include a minute part:

  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

If the MINUTE part is missing from string_expression and the return type includes this part, MINUTE is set to 0.

An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or string_expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
MI Matches 2 digits. Sets the minute part to the matched number. Input for HH:MI P.M.: '03:30 P.M.'
Output as TIME: 15:30:00

Return type

The data type to which the string was cast. This can be:

  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

Examples

SELECT CAST('03:30 P.M.' AS TIME FORMAT 'HH:MI P.M.') AS string_to_date_time

+---------------------+
| string_to_date_time |
+---------------------+
| 15:30:00            |
+---------------------+

Format string as second part

CAST(string_expression AS type FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a string-formatted second to a data type that contains the second part. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • string_expression: This expression contains the string with the second that you need to format.
  • type: The data type to which you are casting. Must include the second part.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the second format element. The formats elements in this string are defined collectively as the format model, which must follow these rules.

These data types include a second part:

  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

If the SECOND part is missing from string_expression and the return type includes this part, SECOND is set to 0.

An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or string_expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
SS Matches 2 digits. Sets the second part to the matched number. Input for HH:MI:SS P.M.: '03:30:02 P.M.'
Output as TIME: 15:30:02
SSSSS Matches 5 digits. Sets the hour, minute and second parts by interpreting the matched number as the number of seconds past midnight. Input for SSSSS: '03723'
Output as TIME: 01:02:03
FFn Matches n digits, where n is the number following FF in the format element. Sets the fractional part of the second part to the matched number. Input for HH24:MI:SS.FF1: '01:05:07.16'
Output as TIME: 01:05:07.2
Input for HH24:MI:SS.FF2: '01:05:07.16'
Output as TIME: 01:05:07.16
Input for HH24:MI:SS.FF3: 'FF3: 01:05:07.16'
Output as TIME: 01:05:07.160

Return type

The data type to which the string was cast. This can be:

  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

Examples

SELECT CAST('01:05:07.16' AS TIME FORMAT 'HH24:MI:SS.FF1') AS string_to_date_time

+---------------------+
| string_to_date_time |
+---------------------+
| 01:05:07.2          |
+---------------------+

Format string as meridian indicator part

CAST(string_expression AS type FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a string-formatted meridian indicator to a data type that contains the meridian indicator part. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • string_expression: This expression contains the string with the meridian indicator that you need to format.
  • type: The data type to which you are casting. Must include the meridian indicator part.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the meridian indicator format element. The formats elements in this string are defined collectively as the format model, which must follow these rules.

These data types include a meridian indicator part:

  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or string_expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
A.M. or P.M. Matches using the regular expression '(A|P)\.M\.'. Input for HH:MI A.M.: '03:30 A.M.'
Output as TIME: 03:30:00
Input for HH:MI P.M.: '03:30 P.M.'
Output as TIME: 15:30:00
Input for HH:MI P.M.: '03:30 A.M.'
Output as TIME: 03:30:00
Input for HH:MI A.M.: '03:30 P.M.'
Output as TIME: 15:30:00
Input for HH:MI a.m.: '03:30 a.m.'
Output as TIME: 03:30:00

Return type

The data type to which the string was cast. This can be:

  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

Examples

SELECT CAST('03:30 P.M.' AS TIME FORMAT 'HH:MI A.M.') AS string_to_date_time

+---------------------+
| string_to_date_time |
+---------------------+
| 15:30:00            |
+---------------------+

Format string as time zone part

CAST(string_expression AS type FORMAT format_string_expression)

Casts a string-formatted time zone to a data type that contains the time zone part. Includes format elements, which provide instructions for how to conduct the cast.

  • string_expression: This expression contains the string with the time zone that you need to format.
  • type: The data type to which you are casting. Must include the time zone part.
  • format_string_expression: A string which contains format elements, including the time zone format element. The formats elements in this string are defined collectively as the format model, which must follow these rules.

These data types include a time zone part:

  • DATE
  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

An error is generated if a value that is not a supported format element appears in format_string_expression or string_expression does not contain a value specified by a format element.

Format element Returns Example
TZH Matches using the regular expression '(\+|\-| )[0-9]{2}'. Sets the time zone and hour parts to the matched sign and number. Sets the time zone sign to be the first letter of the matched string. The number 2 means matching up to 2 digits for non-exact matching, and exactly 2 digits for exact matching. Input for YYYY-MM-DD HH:MI:SSTZH: '2008-12-25 05:30:00-08'
Output as TIMESTAMP: 2008-12-25 05:30:00-08
TZM Matches 2 digits. Let n be the matched number. If the time zone sign is the minus sign, sets the time zone minute part to -n. Otherwise, sets the time zone minute part to n. Input for YYYY-MM-DD HH:MI:SSTZH: '2008-12-25 05:30:00+05.30'
Output as TIMESTAMP: 2008-12-25 05:30:00+05.30

Return type

The data type to which the string was cast. This can be:

  • DATE
  • TIME
  • DATETIME
  • TIMESTAMP

Examples

SELECT CAST('2020.06.03 00:00:53+00' AS TIMESTAMP FORMAT 'YYYY.MM.DD HH:MI:SSTZH') AS string_to_date_time

+-----------------------------+
| as_timestamp                |
+-----------------------------+
| 2020-06-03 00:00:53.110 UTC |
+-----------------------------+

Format string as literal

CAST(string_expression AS data_type FORMAT format_string_expression)
Format element Returns Example
- Output is the same as the input.
. Output is the same as the input. .
/ Output is the same as the input. /
, Output is the same as the input. ,
' Output is the same as the input. '
; Output is the same as the input. ;
: Output is the same as the input. :
Whitespace A consecutive sequence of one or more spaces in the format model is matched with one or more consecutive Unicode whitespace characters in the input. Space means the ASCII 32 space character. It does not mean the general whitespace such as a tab or new line. Any whitespace character that is not the ASCII 32 character in the format model generates an error.
"text" Output generated by the format element in formatting, using this regular expression, with s representing the string input: regex.escape(s). Input: "abc"
Output: abc
Input: "a\"b\\c"
Output: a"b\c

Format numeric type as string

CAST(numeric_expression AS STRING FORMAT format_string_expression)

You can cast a numeric type to a string by combining the following format elements:

Except for the exponent format element (EEEE), all of the format elements generate a fixed number of characters in the output, and the output is aligned by the decimal point. The first character outputs a - for negative numbers; otherwise a space. To suppress blank characters and trailing zeroes, use the FM flag.

Return type

STRING

Example

SELECT input, CAST(input AS STRING FORMAT '$999,999.999') AS output
FROM UNNEST([1.2, 12.3, 123.456, 1234.56, -12345.678, 1234567.89]) AS input

+------------+---------------+
|   input    |    output     |
+------------+---------------+
|        1.2 |        $1.200 |
|       12.3 |       $12.300 |
|    123.456 |      $123.456 |
|    1234.56 |    $1,234.560 |
| -12345.678 |  -$12,345.678 |
| 1234567.89 |  $###,###.### |
+------------+---------------+

Format digits as string

The following format elements output digits. If there aren't enough digit format elements to represent the input, all digit format elements are replaced with # in the output.

Format element Returns Example
0 A decimal digit. Leading and trailing zeros are included. Input: 12
Format: '000'
Output: ' 012'
Input: 12
Format: '000.000'
Output: ' 012.000'
Input: -12
Format: '000.000'
Output: '-012.000'
9 A decimal digit. Leading zeros are replaced with spaces. Trailing zeros are included. Input: 12
Format: '999'
Output: '  12'
Input: 12
Format: '999.999'
Output: '  12.000'
X or x

A hexadecimal digit. Cannot appear with other format elements except 0, FM, and the sign format elements. The maximum number of hexadecimal digits in the format string is 16.

X generates uppercase letters and x generates lowercase letters.

When 0 is combined with the hexadecimal format element, the letter generated by 0 matches the case of the next X or x element. If there is no subsequent X or x, then 0 generates an uppercase letter.

Input: 43981
Format: 'XXXX'
Output: ' ABCD'
Input: 43981
Format: 'xxxx'
Output: ' abcd'
Input: 43981
Format: '0X0x'
Output: ' ABcd'
Input: 43981
Format: '0000000X'
Output: ' 0000ABCD'

Return type

STRING

Example

SELECT
  CAST(12 AS STRING FORMAT '999') as a,
  CAST(-12 AS STRING FORMAT '999') as b;

+------+------+
|  a   |  b   |
+------+------+
|   12 |  -12 |
+------+------+

Format decimal point as string

The following format elements output a decimal point. These format elements are mutually exclusive. At most one can appear in the format string.

Format element Returns Example
. (period) Decimal point. Input: 123.58
Format: '999.999'
Output: ' 123.580'
D The decimal point of the current locale. Input: 123.58
Format: '999D999'
Output: ' 123.580'

Return type

STRING

Example

SELECT CAST(12.5 AS STRING FORMAT '99.99') as a;

+--------+
|   a    |
+--------+
|  12.50 |
+--------+

Format sign as string

The following format elements output the sign (+/-). These format elements are mutually exclusive. At most one can appear in the format string.

If there are no sign format elements, one extra space is reserved for the sign. For example, if the input is 12 and the format string is '99', then the output is ' 12', with a length of three characters.

The sign appears before the number. If the format model includes a currency symbol element, then the sign appears before the currency symbol.

Format element Returns Example
S Explicit sign. Outputs + for positive numbers and - for negative numbers. The position in the output is anchored to the number. NaN and 0 will not be signed. Input: -12
Format: 'S9999'
Output: '  -12'
Input: -12
Format: '9999S'
Output: '  12-'
MI Explicit sign. Outputs a space for positive numbers and - for negative numbers. This element can only appear in the last position. Input: 12
Format: '9999MI'
Output: '  12 '
Input: -12
Format: '9999MI'
Output: '  12-'
PR For negative numbers, the value is enclosed in angle brackets. For positive numbers, the value is returned with a leading and trailing space. This element can only appear in the last position. Input: 12
Format: '9999PR'
Output: '   12 '
Input: -12
Format: '9999PR'
Output: '  <12>'

Return type

STRING

Example

SELECT
  CAST(12 AS STRING FORMAT 'S99') as a,
  CAST(-12 AS STRING FORMAT 'S99') as b;

+-----+-----+
|  a  |  b  |
+-----+-----+
| +12 | -12 |
+-----+-----+

Format currency symbol as string

The following format elements output a currency symbol. These format elements are mutually exclusive. At most one can appear in the format string. In the output, the currency symbol appears before the first digit or decimal point.

Format element Returns Example
$ Dollar sign ($). Input: -12
Format: '$999'
Output: ' -$12'
C or c The ISO-4217 currency code of the current locale. Input: -12
Format: 'C999'
Output: ' -USD12'
Input: -12
Format: 'c999'
Output: ' -usd12'
L The currency symbol of the current locale. Input: -12
Format: 'L999'
Output: ' -$12'

Return type

STRING

Example

SELECT
  CAST(12 AS STRING FORMAT '$99') as a,
  CAST(-12 AS STRING FORMAT '$99') as b;

+------+------+
|  a   |  b   |
+------+------+
|  $12 | -$12 |
+------+------+

Format group separator as string

The following format elements output a group separator.

Format element Returns Example
, (comma) Group separator. Input: 12345
Format: '999,999'
Output: '  12,345'
G The group separator point of the current locale. Input: 12345
Format: '999G999'
Output: '  12,345'

Return type

STRING

Example

SELECT CAST(1234 AS STRING FORMAT '999,999') as a;

+----------+
|    a     |
+----------+
|    1,234 |
+----------+

Other numeric format elements

Format element Returns Example
B Outputs spaces when the integer part is zero. If the integer part of the number is 0, then the following format elements generate spaces in the output: digits (9, X, 0), decimal point, group separator, currency, sign, and exponent. Input: 0.23
Format: 'B99.999S'
Output: '       '
Input: 1.23
Format: 'B99.999S'
Output: ' 1.230+'
EEEE Outputs the exponent part of the value in scientific notation. If the exponent value is between -99 and 99, the output is four characters. Otherwise, the minimum number of digits is used in the output. Input: 20
Format: '9.99EEEE'
Output: ' 2.0E+01'
Input: 299792458
Format: 'S9.999EEEE'
Output: '+2.998E+08'
FM Removes all spaces and trailing zeroes from the output. You can use this element to suppress spaces and trailing zeroes that are generated by other format elements. Input: 12.5
Format: '999999.000FM'
Output: '12.5'
RN Returns the value as Roman numerals, rounded to the nearest integer. The input must be between 1 and 3999. The output is padded with spaces to the left to a length of 15. This element cannot be used with other format elements except FM. Input: 2021
Format: 'RN'
Output: '          MMXXI'
V The input value is multiplied by 10^n, where n is the number of 9s after the V. This element cannot be used with a decimal point or exponent format element. Input: 23.5
Format: 'S000V00'
Output: '+02350'

Return type

STRING

Example

SELECT CAST(-123456 AS STRING FORMAT '9.999EEEE') as a;"

+------------+
|     a      |
+------------+
| -1.235E+05 |
+------------+

About BASE encoding

BASE encoding translates binary data in string format into a radix-X representation.

If X is 2, 8, or 16, Arabic numerals 0–9 and the Latin letters a–z are used in the encoded string. So for example, BASE16/Hexadecimal encoding results contain 0~9 and a~f.

If X is 32 or 64, the default character tables are defined in rfc 4648. When you decode a BASE string where X is 2, 8, or 16, the Latin letters in the input string are case-insensitive. For example, both "3a" and "3A" are valid input strings for BASE16/Hexadecimal decoding, and will output the same result.