Viewing data and associated explanations

You can view data and associated explanations (metadata) for up to 50 selected series at a time. To view data and metadata, use the following buttons appearing in the "data functions toolbar" at the top of the page:

Return to help contents Click on this to view all information available for your selected series.
data table Click on this to view a data table presenting your selected series.
data chart Click on this to view a data chart displaying your selected series.

Viewing Metadata

The Metadata page contains information grouped according to two levels of detail: dataset and series levels. This type of information is often referred to as metadata.

The most common definition of "metadata" is "data about data". In statistical terms, it provides information about statistical data and about processes of producing and using the data (methodology, compilation methods, data sources, etc.).

The dataset-level metadata represents the highest level of information corresponding to the datasets to which your selected time series belong. Explanatory notes will appear for each of these datasets. An example of dataset-level metadata can be information about data collection or compilation. In addition, the contact details of the responsible business area can also be found in this section.

The series-level metadata is the lowest level of metadata. Each of your selected series will have an entry under series-level metadatas. Typical series-level metadata are, for example, the series title or information about units in which the series is expressed.

The following icons are displayed in the top right-hand corner of each of the two metadata areas:

icon hide / icon show Collapse/Expand area - click on this to hide/show a metadata area.

Viewing the Data Table

The Data Table page displays your selected data in tabular format. It also enables basic data transformations. It consists of three areas: Parameters and Transformations, Common Description (if applicable) and data area.

Parameters and Transformations section (table)

The Parameters and Transformations section allows you to change the date range of displayed series and apply one of the pre-selected data transformations. Note that the section is hidden by default; to expand it use the "Show" icon.

To restrict the date range of the data displayed, enter a date range in DD-MM-YYYY format in the date range fields at the top of the Data Table page and click on the "Apply Settings" button. The page will refresh with data displayed in accordance with your date range restriction. To remove the date range restriction, click on the "Reset Settings" button.

To apply a simple data transformation choose one of the available functions from a dropdown list located at the bottom of the Parameters and Transformations section. It is only possible to select one transformation type at a time. A selected transformation applies to all series displayed within the data area, and the transformed values appear on the right-hand side of each time series.

Note that when working with frequency conversion functions it is only possible to convert data from a higher to a lower frequency (for example, monthly data into quarterly data). The conversion method depends on the collection indicator of a selected series (this can be checked using the Explanation tab). The most common collection indicators are: average over a period (A); beginning of period (B); and end of period (E). The respective conversion method acts as follows: (A) - calculates an average over a specified period; (B) - retrieves the first observation of a specified period; and (E) - retrieves the last observation of a specified period.

Other collection indicators include highest and lowest in a period (H and L respectively) and summed through period (S).

The example below shows a monthly time series containing values for a year and the annual values resulting from conversions following the different collection indicator values.

Jan 2005 1.00
Feb 2005 1.20
Mar 2005 1.50
Apr 2005 1.80
May 2005 1.00
Jun 2005 2.30
Jul 2005 2.10
Aug 2005 2.00
Sep 2005 1.80
Oct 2005 2.10
Nov 2005 1.70
Dec 2005 1.60

Collection indicator Annual value for 2005 Calculation
A 1.68 Sum of all 12 observations divided by 12
B 1.00 Beginning of period: January observation
E 1.60 End of period: December observation
H 2.30 Highest value of the period
L 1.00 Lowest value of the period
S 20.10 All values of the period summed

Other transformations allow you to calculate year-to-year and period-to-period changes and percentage changes. Please note that these transformation options cannot be used if time series contain both negative and positive values. The time series have to be comprised of either negative or positive observations in order for these transformations to work.

It should also be noted that these changes require the existence of both values, i.e. the value of the previous year or period and that of the current one, otherwise the resulting value will be a "null" value. This is often the case when calculating the year-to-year or period-to-period (percentage) changes for data reported on a business frequency, as the same date of the previous year might have fallen on a weekend or a bank holiday.

You can also control the way in which missing values are treated. This is done using the "Ignore missing values" option, available on the My Settings page. The option is set to true by default (the corresponding checkbox is marked) and instructs the SDW to ignore missing values and, accordingly, drop them from the calculation.

Table Common Description

Also appearing on the Data Table page is the Common Description from the Data Selection page, which displays all common filter criteria currently applying to your data selection.

Data area

Within the data area, time series are displayed by default in time-descending order. To reverse the order, click on the arrow displayed at the top of the period column. Period labels are displayed on the left. The series titles identifying each series appear at the top, while time series keys are shown in the tool tips of the time series titles. Source information is provided for each of the displayed series. To identify the data provider for a selected series, check the reference note after the series title. A list of corresponding data providers (source) appears in the first line of the data area.

If you have selected time series with different frequencies and have elected to display data by frequency (on the My Settings page), you will have the option of viewing your series grouped together and presented separately by frequency. Select a frequency from the dropdown options directly above the Data Table to view all selected series with the chosen frequency. To view all selected series on the same page, simply select "All" from the Frequency options. To change your frequency display preference, check/uncheck the Display Data by Frequency checkbox (under Display Options) on the My Settings page.

Please note that owing to a restriction on the amount of data that can be displayed, only a limited number of observations can be taken into account in the data table display. If the maximum number of observations is exceeded, older observations will not be displayed in the data table. In order to access all observations, refreshable export options (Excel refreshable, Excel with Populator, Excel PivotTables, Excel Local Cubes or Stata Dynamic) or CSV format need to be used.

To generate a printer-friendly version of the data table, use the following button appearing at the top of the Data Table page:

Print icon Click on this to print the data table. A new browser window will appear giving you the option of entering a title, a footnote, column (time series) headings and selecting landscape orientation. Click on the "Print" button when complete and your printable data table will appear in PDF format.

On a Data Table page, the relevant button inside the "data functions toolbar" is highlighted in blue:

Screen data table

Click on a button from the toolbar to view Data table, Data Chart or Metadata, to Export or save (Add to My Data) the time series of your choice.

Viewing the Data Chart

The Data Chart page displays your selected data in graphical format. It consists of three areas: Parameters and Transformations, Common Description (if applicable), and a chart area.

Parameters and Transformations section (chart)

The Parameters and Transformations section allows you to change the date range of displayed series, set a history snapshot date, and apply one of the pre-selected data transformations. Note that the section is hidden by default; to expand it use the "Show" icon.

To restrict the date range of the data displayed, enter a date range in DD-MM-YYYY format in the date range fields at the top of the Data Chart page and click on the "Apply Settings" button. The page will refresh with data displayed in accordance with your date range restriction. To remove the date range restriction, click on the "Reset Settings" button.

To apply a simple data transformation, choose one of the available functions from a dropdown list located at the bottom of the Parameters and Transformations section. It is only possible to select one transformation type at a time. The transformation applies to all series displayed in the chart area, and they are displayed together with the original series.

Note that when working with frequency conversion functions it is only possible to convert data from a higher to a lower frequency (for example, monthly data into quarterly data). The conversion method depends on the collection indicator of a selected series (this can be checked using the Explanation tab). The most common collection indicators are: average over a period (A); beginning of period (B); and end of period (E). The respective conversion method acts as follows: (A) – calculates an average over a specified period; (B) – retrieves the first observation of a specified period; and (E) – retrieves the last observation of a specified period.

Other collection indicators include highest and lowest in a period (H and L respectively) and summed through period (S).

The example below shows a monthly time series containing values for a year and the annual values resulting from conversions following the different collection indicator values.

Example time series:

Jan 2005 1.00
Feb 2005 1.20
Mar 2005 1.50
Apr 2005 1.80
May 2005 1.00
Jun 2005 2.30
Jul 2005 2.10
Aug 2005 2.00
Sep 2005 1.80
Oct 2005 2.10
Nov 2005 1.70
Dec 2005 1.60

Collection indicator Annual value for 2005 Calculation
A 1.68 Sum of all 12 observations divided by 12
B 1.00 Beginning of period: January observation
E 1.60 End of period: December observation
H 2.30 Highest value of the period
L 1.00 Lowest value of the period
S 20.10 All values of the period summed

Other transformations allow you to calculate year-to-year and period-to-period changes and percentage changes. Please note that these transformation options cannot be used if time series contain both negative and positive values. The time series have to be comprised of either negative or positive observations in order for these transformations to work.

It should also be noted that these changes require the existence of both values, i.e. the value of the previous year or period and that of the current one, otherwise the resulting value will be a "null" value. This is often the case when calculating the year-to-year or period-to-period (percentage) changes for data reported on a business frequency, as the same date of the previous year might have fallen on a weekend or a bank holiday.

You can also control the way in which missing values are treated. This is done with the "Ignore missing values" option, available on the My Settings page.

Chart Common Description

Also appearing on the Data Chart page is the Common Description from the Data Selection page, which displays all common filter criteria currently applying to your data selection.

Chart area

All of your selected series appear on a single line chart, each demarcated in a different colour. Period labels are displayed on the x-axis and observation value scales on the y-axis. Colour-coded time series titles identifying each series appear directly beneath the chart. Source information is provided for each of the displayed series. To identify the data provider for a selected series, check the reference note after the series title. A list of corresponding data providers (source) appears at the very bottom of the Data Chart page.

Please note that owing to a restriction on the amount of data that can be displayed, only a limited number of observations can be taken into account in the data chart display. If the maximum number of observations is exceeded, older observations will not be displayed on the charts. In order to access all observations, refreshable export options (Excel refreshable, Excel with Populator, Excel PivotTables, Excel Local Cubes or Stata Dynamic) or CSV format need to be used.

To generate a printer-friendly version of the data chart, use the following button appearing at the top of the Data Chart page:

Print icon Click on this to print the data chart. A new browser window will appear giving you the option of entering a title, a footnote, column (time series) headings and selecting landscape orientation. Click on the "Print" button when complete and your printable data chart will appear in PDF format.

On a Data Chart page, the relevant button inside the "data functions toolbar" is highlighted in blue:

Screen data table

Click on a button from the toolbar to view Data table, Data Chart or Metadata, to Export or save (Add to My Data) the time series of your choice..

Viewing reports

To view reports based on data contained in the SDW, click on the Reports item in the navigation menu on the left-hand side. Select a publication type from the menu. The selected publication will expand to reveal a list of available reports, and/or further navigation subcategories, which can be expanded to display associated reports.

A navigation item preceded by a plus sign ( + ) indicates that the item contains further sub-items and can be expanded. A navigation item preceded by a minus sign ( - ) indicates that you are currently browsing within that item. The most recently selected item is highlighted in blue. There are three types of leaf node pages available within the navigation menu Reports: "Data" and "Latest". The Data type has identical properties, like all leaf node pages within the hierarchy of the Economic Concept. Click on a Data leaf node to view all series used within a chosen data table. Depending on the number of series attached, this leads to a Data Selection or a Data Table page. The Latest leaf node is designated with a PDF icon and displays data tables in PDF format. These pages are generated on the basis of the latest data available in the SDW. Some publications also include explanatory, general and technical notes.

On the top level of most publications, the “full report” option is also available. This allows you to see in one PDF file all pages included in the Latest leaf nodes under that publication. For some publications, the full report functionality can be available at chapter level as well.

To create your own reports use the My Reports functionality.