Often we get dates are in a form of a string. When you try to convert to a numeric date, it may quite annoying. However, with a simple date function, your life will be simpler and much blessed.

A: Use the “date” function.

**Put the string_date variable first and then put the format that it is in. “D”=Day, “M”=Month, and “Y”=Year

gen numeric_date=date(string_date, “DMY”)

**To make the date readable, use “format”

format %d numeric_date

***Let’s see it in action


set obs 1

gen string_date=”11/10/2016″

gen string_date1=”11oct2016″

gen numeric_date=date(string_date, “DMY”)

gen numeric_date1=date(string_date, “DMY”)

format %d numeric_date numeric_date1