This document refers to Macrobond 1.15 and later.


With the Bar chart presentation in the Macrobond application, you can display category series in columns with horizontal bars, lines and text.

In the sample chart below, there are three columns. The leftmost is a text column that shows the description of the value; in this case the region. In the middle, there is a bar graph (red) that shows the current value and on top of that graph there is a marker graph (blue) that shows the value of the last year. The rightmost column shows the current value as text.


Here is another example that consists of four columns. There is a text column to the left. Then there is a column for the female demography with a reversed axis. The next column contains the male statistics. The fourth column contains a stacked bar graph to illustrate the total. Separators have been added between some columns. The color has been changed for the age span 40-44 to highlight the highest value.


You typically use the Scalar analysis in order to calculate the category series to be presented.

Chart settings

The bar chart offers a lot of settings so that you can control the content and style of the chart.

Below you can see the names of most elements of a bar chart.


There is a hierarchical order of the elements. For instance, a glyph is part of a graph, a graph is part of a graph area, the graph area is part of a column and the column is part of the chart. When you select an element, there will be tabs in the command bar that correspond to the selected element and all elements that it is contained in. For instance, if a glyph is selected, there will be tabs for the graph, the graph area, the column and the chart.


Many settings can be found on several levels. For instance, for a column you can select the color and width of the separator. The setting can use the default value, which is defined for the whole chart, or you can override the value for just the selected column. As soon as you change the value for a column, it will become pinned and will no longer use the default value. This is indicated by the blue “pin” to the right of the setting and you can go back to use the default value by “unpinning” the setting.


The default value in this case can be found on the Chart properties tab:


When changing the default, it will affect all columns that use the default value.

In this case, the default value specified on the Chart properties tab has a default value of its own. This default comes from the chart style sheet.

Chart size

As opposed to time charts, the size of Bar charts is determined by the content of the chart.

The width of the columns can be set automatically based on the content or it can be set explicitly per column. You can enter the width on the Column properties tab, or you can use the mouse to drag the divider between the columns.


The height is determined by the size of the header, footer and graph area. The size of the graph area is determined by the number of rows and the row height. The row height is, in turn, determined by the size of the glyphs, for graph columns and the text for text columns. You can set the height for glyphs on the Graph properties tab, but more commonly, you adjust the default size under Column defaults on the Chart properties tab. The default value can be set in a style sheet.


The height of a row on a text column is determined by the number of text rows and the font size.

Graph layout

You can edit the set of columns and graphs by using the Graph layout dialog. It can be reached from the ”Graph layout…” on the Chart, context menu, toolbar or Ctrl+L shortcut.


You can add, remove and change the order of columns and graphs. If there are several graphs within one column, they will be drawn in the order defined in the dialog. The last graph will thus be drawn on top of the others.

You can select whether new series that are added to the document should be automatically added to each column.

When you add a new bar chart to a document, there will be a text column with the title and a graph column with bars.

Text columns

It is often very convenient to use dynamic text in text columns. You can set the default text to be used for all cells in a text column. You might even want to use only text columns. In this example, the first column uses the title and the other two columns the dynamic text “{s .Value F1}%,” which will present the value of the series with one decimal followed by a percentage sign.


Automatic merging of axes

As can be seen in the chart of the Japan demography above, the axes of the Female and Male column share the same value 0. This happens automatically if a number of conditions are met:

Style sheets

You can define default settings for Bar charts in a style sheet. This is done in the Style sheet activity.

You can select to apply a new style sheet any time. You can also select that a particular style sheet should be automatically applied to all new charts.

Settings from style sheets will only apply to settings in the chart that are set to use the default value. However, there is an option for unpinning all settings affected by the style sheet in the dialog where you select which style sheet to apply:


If you have a chart that you think looks nice and wish to create a style sheet based on that look, you can select “Open in style sheet editor…” on the “Style sheet” menu when the Bar chart is active. This will copy the current settings from the chart to the style sheet. For settings that may have several different configurations within the same chart, like separators between columns and graph area settings, the first relevant column will be used. Graph styles will be copied from the first eight graphs.

For more details on how to define style sheets, see the Style sheet activity.

Sample charts