How to Calculate a Cumulative Sum Using dplyr


You can use the following methods to calculate the cumulative sum of a column in R using the dplyr package:

Method 1: Calculate Cumulative Sum of One Column

df %>% mutate(cum_sum = cumsum(var1))

Method 2: Calculate Cumulative Sum by Group

df %>% group_by(var1) %>% mutate(cum_sum = cumsum(var2))

The following examples show how to use each method in practice.

Example 1: Calculate Cumulative Sum Using dplyr

Suppose we have the following data frame in R:

#create dataset
df <- data.frame(day=c(1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8),
                 sales=c(7, 12, 10, 9, 9, 11, 18, 23))

#view dataset
df

  day sales
1   1     7
2   2    12
3   3    10
4   4     9
5   5     9
6   6    11
7   7    18
8   8    23

We can use the following code to create a new column that contains the cumulative sum of the values in the ‘sales’ column:

library(dplyr)

#calculate cumulative sum of sales
df %>% mutate(cum_sales = cumsum(sales))

  day sales cum_sales
1   1     7         7
2   2    12        19
3   3    10        29
4   4     9        38
5   5     9        47
6   6    11        58
7   7    18        76
8   8    23        99

Example 2: Calculate Cumulative Sum by Group Using dplyr

Suppose we have the following data frame in R:

#create dataset
df <- data.frame(store=c('A', 'A', 'A', 'A', 'B', 'B', 'B', 'B'),
                 day=c(1, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2, 3, 4),
                 sales=c(7, 12, 10, 9, 9, 11, 18, 23))

#view dataset
df

  store day sales
1     A   1     7
2     A   2    12
3     A   3    10
4     A   4     9
5     B   1     9
6     B   2    11
7     B   3    18
8     B   4    23

We can use the following code to create a new column that contains the cumulative sum of the values in the ‘sales’ column, grouped by the ‘store’ column:

library(dplyr)

#calculate cumulative sum of sales by store
df %>% group_by(store) %>% mutate(cum_sales = cumsum(sales))

# A tibble: 8 x 4
# Groups:   store [2]
  store   day sales cum_sales   
1 A         1     7         7
2 A         2    12        19
3 A         3    10        29
4 A         4     9        38
5 B         1     9         9
6 B         2    11        20
7 B         3    18        38
8 B         4    23        61

Additional Resources

The following tutorials explain how to perform other common calculations in R:

How to Calculate the Sum by Group in R
How to Calculate the Mean by Group in R

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