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Oracle9i SQL Reference
Release 2 (9.2)

Part Number A96540-02
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Use the MERGE statement to select rows from one table for update or insertion into another table. The decision whether to update or insert into the target table is based on a condition in the ON clause.

This statement is a convenient way to combine at least two operations. It lets you avoid multiple INSERT and UPDATE DML statements.

MERGE is a deterministic statement. That is, you cannot update the same row of the target table multiple times in the same MERGE statement.


You must have INSERT and UPDATE object privileges on the target table and SELECT privilege on the source table.



Text description of statements_9a.gif follows
Text description of merge


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Text description of merge_update_clause


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Text description of merge_insert_clause


INTO Clause

Use the INTO clause to specify the target table you are updating or inserting into.

USING Clause

Use the USING clause to specify the source of the data to be updated or inserted. The source can be a table, view, or the result of a subquery.

ON Clause

Use the ON clause to specify the condition upon which the MERGE operation either updates or inserts. For each row in the target table for which the search condition is true, Oracle updates the row based with corresponding data from the source table. If the condition is not true for any rows, then Oracle inserts into the target table based on the corresponding source table row.


Use these clauses to instruct Oracle how to respond to the results of the join condition in the ON clause. You can specify these two clauses in either order.


The merge_update_clause specifies the new column values of the target table. Oracle performs this update if the condition of the ON clause is true. If the update clause is executed, then all update triggers defined on the target table are activated.

Restrictions on Updating a View

The merge_insert_clause specifies values to insert into the column of the target table if the condition of the ON clause is false. If the insert clause is executed, then all insert triggers defined on the target table are activated.

Restriction on Merging into a View

You cannot specify DEFAULT when updating a view.


Merging into a Table: Example

The following example creates a bonuses table in the sample schema oe with a default bonus of 100. It then inserts into the bonuses table all employees who made sales (based on the sales_rep_id column of the oe.orders table). Finally, the Human Resources manager decides that all employees should receive a bonus. Those who have not made sales get a bonus of 1% of their salary. Those who already made sales get an increase in their bonus equal to 1% of their salary. The MERGE statement implements these changes in one step:

CREATE TABLE bonuses (employee_id NUMBER, bonus NUMBER DEFAULT 100);

INSERT INTO bonuses(employee_id)
   (SELECT e.employee_id FROM employees e, orders o
   WHERE e.employee_id = o.sales_rep_id
   GROUP BY e.employee_id); 

SELECT * FROM bonuses;

----------- ----------
        153        100
        154        100
        155        100
        156        100
        158        100
        159        100
        160        100
        161        100
        163        100

MERGE INTO bonuses D
   USING (SELECT employee_id, salary, department_id FROM employees
   WHERE department_id = 80) S
   ON (D.employee_id = S.employee_id)
   WHEN MATCHED THEN UPDATE SET D.bonus = D.bonus + S.salary*.01
   WHEN NOT MATCHED THEN INSERT (D.employee_id, D.bonus)
   VALUES (S.employee_id, S.salary*0.1);

----------- ----------
        153        180
        154        175
        155        170
        156        200
        158        190
        159        180
        160        175
        161        170
        163        195
        157        950
        145       1400
        170        960
        179        620
        152        900
        169       1000