*Time Series Graph*

# Time Series Graph

Complex time series graph to visualize detailed financial data.

#### What is a time series graph?

A time series graph, also called a times series chart or time series plot, is a graphic design that illustrates data points indexed in time order. A time series graph is one of the most commonly used data visualizations. The natural order of the horizontal time scale gives this graph its strength and efficiency.

A time series is a sequence taken at successive spaced points in time. Thus it is a sequence of discrete-time data. A time series plot is usually the step in a complex time series analysis or time series forecasting. In finance, a moving average is an indicator often used in technical analysis of stocks and other assets. There may be a seasonality. Does the time series show a trend? In general, the development of observations over time can be shown at a glance. How do multiple time series develop in relation to each other?

Under a time series graph, one usually imagines a line chart, i.e. observations are connected with a continuous line. The purpose of the line chart is to show relative change over time. However, it is not unusual in weather charts to show temperature and rainfall over a period of time in one chart, where a line is chosen for temperature and bars for rainfall. Another special case of the line chart is the area chart, where the area below a line is filled with a solid color to emphasize volume or quantity as well.

#### A brief history of the Time Series Graph

The oldest know visualization to show observations plotted over a time scale was reported in Howard Gray Funkhouser’s 1936 article, entitled *A Note on A Tenth Century Graph*, as Edward Tufte points out in his book *The Visual Display of Qualitative Information*. That graph from almost 1.000 years ago showed planetary movements. All but one of the 44 charts in William Playfair’s *The Commercial and Political Atlas* were time series graphs.

#### Best uses for the time series graph

- Financial charts, such as exchange rates, stock prices, or any other asset.
- Weather data such as temperatures, rainfall, or even tides.
- Atmospheric distribution of the drivers of climate change: carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O).
- Show how quantities, like sales, have changed over time across multiple related data series using bars or an area chart.
- Add a vertical, or horizontal shade to put the focus on certain parts of your data, like economic boost and bust cycles.

#### How to create a time series graph with Vizzlo?

- Use Vizzlo’s spreadsheet to enter your data as a Microsoft Excel file or as a CSV file quickly. Vizzlo’s spreadsheet supports more than 20 different date formats.
- Change each series to be shown as a line chart, bar chart, or area chart.
- The chart is fully interactive - just click on any series to change its properties like color, style, opacity, and width.
- Drag the legend to any position.
- Change the scale of the y-axis to be logarithmic or keep the linear scale.
- Click on the x-axis and y-axis to see customization options: set the axis range, define the scale and choose how to display axis tick marks and labels.
- Show or hide vertical, horizontal gridlines or click on Edit single gridlines to manually choose gridlines you want to display.
- Time series graph: pro tips
- Add a moving average that helps to smooth out the data to put the focus away from the noise onto the signal.
- Add shades to overlay, e.g. recession bands on a time series plot.
- Fill the space between lines to highlight the greater-than and less-than differences over time.

#### Time series graph maker: key features

- Show multiple series as lines, bars, or area charts.
- Interpolated the observations as straight lines or splines.
- Aggregate a series to a lower frequency or granularity.
- Add a moving average, a trendline, or a projection, growth rates, reference line, and a benchmark line.
- Fill area between two lines.
- Add points to the chart in various shapes.
- Adjust the opacity of your series, whether its a line, bar, or area.
- Plot the data on a linear scale or a logarithmic scale.
- Specify major gridlines separately for vertical gridlines and horizontal gridlines.
- Adjust the number format of the vertical axis.
- Adjust the date format of the horizontal axis.
- Click on the x-axis or y-axis to change the color, change the format of the axis label or hide the axes.
- Add an optional secondary y-axis.
- Adjust the axes ranges and axes breaks.
- Custom axis ticks position.

#### Resources

- How to create an Area chart
- How to create a Control chart
- How to create a Difference chart
- Line, area and time-series graphs. Choose the best visualization type for your data

##### Time Series Graph: What's new?

**May 28, 2020**

- Improved axis tick positions for very small ranges of the y-axis
- Labels and values are at correct positions when you add reference lines or a moving average

**Apr 24, 2020**

**NEW** Multiple bar series can be positioned in three different ways.

- Grouped — multiple series are arranged side-by-side
- Stacked — stack overlapping series on top of each another
- Separate — positions won’t be adjusted, series are displayed overlapping

**Apr 17, 2020**

We had introduced a bug with the last release. 🙄

Multiple bar series containing missing data are now displayed correctly again.

**Apr 14, 2020**

We did a few improvements to this chart regarding:

- The user interface was polished for a selected series
- By default the y axis starts at zero for bar charts and area charts
- Defaults y axis range was improved when a log scale is applied

Fixed. Also we fixed a bug that didn’t show difference shades correctly on Safari browser.

**Mar 13, 2020**

We have added the possibility to show series as grouped bars.

Click on a series and under `Series style`

chose `Grouped bars`

**Jan 7, 2020**

**NEW.** In Analysis, you can now aggregate your observations by summing them over an interval.

# Time Series Graph Alternatives

## Use Cases

Finance & Economics# Enhance your productivity

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