Deviations example Champion Kit Box

Sample minima and maxima in Champion Kit Boxes as of July 4, 2019, together with means and graphically visualized ranges

In statistics, the sample maximum and sample minimum, also called the largest observation and smallest observation, are the values of the greatest and least elements of a sample.

If the sample has outliers, they necessarily include the sample maximum or sample minimum, or both, depending on whether they are extremely high or low. However, the sample maximum and minimum need not be outliers, if they are not unusually far from other observations.


The sample maximum and minimum are the least robust statistics: they are maximally sensitive to outliers.

This can either be an advantage or a drawback: if extreme values are real (not measurement errors), and of real consequence, as in applications of extreme value theory such as financial loss, then outliers (as reflected in sample extrema) are important. On the other hand, if outliers have little or no impact on actual outcomes, then using non-robust statistics such as the sample extrema simply cloud the statistics, and robust alternatives should be used.

See also

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