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# Counts and percentages

I want to show the COUNT of a column and what percentage of the total that COUNT is. This does not work in Oracle...

8i:

```SELECT   nationality,
(
(COUNT (*) * 100)
/
(
SELECT  COUNT (*)
FROM    member
)
)  AS percentage
FROM     member
GROUP BY nationality
ORDER BY nationality;
```

Unfortunately, you can't use a subquery (like "(SELECT COUNT (*) FROM member)") in the SELECT clause. If you had the total count of all nationalities stored in a table by itself, you could do this:

```SELECT    m.nationality,
(COUNT (m.nationality) * 100) / t.total_cnt
AS percentage
FROM      member      m,
total_table t
GROUP BY  m.nationality,
t.total_cnt
ORDER BY  m.nationality;
```
This is not very satisfactory because
• You have to take steps to guarantee that total_table hasn't grown out ot date before you run the query.
• It wastes storage space.
• It clutters up the data dictionary.
You can solve the first two problems by making total_table a view instead of a table. Starting with version 8.1 of Oracle, you can solve the last problem by making it an inline view.
```SELECT    m.nationality,
(COUNT (m.nationality) * 100) / t.total_cnt
AS percentage
FROM      member      m,
(
SELECT  COUNT (*)    AS total_cnt
FROM    member
)  t
GROUP BY  m.nationality,
t.total_cnt
ORDER BY  m.nationality;
```
Whenever you find yourself thinking "I wish there was a table that ..." or "It would be a lot simpler if there was a table that ...", then think of views, particularly inline views. This happens a lot when you have to deal with group functions. For example, I look at the query above and think "It would be a lot simpler if there was a table that had one line per nationality." So I'd write it with a second inline view, the result set of which was a table with one line per nationality:
```SELECT   n.nationality,
(n.nationality_cnt * 100) / t.total_cnt
AS percentage
FROM     (
SELECT    nationality,
COUNT (*)     AS nationality_cnt
FROM      member
GROUP BY  nationality
)  n,
(
SELECT  COUNT (*) AS total_cnt
FROM    member
)  t
ORDER BY n.nationality;
```

This was last published in August 2003

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