Transcript – Using the Fill range charting function

[01 Introduction to Fill range function] 

Fill range is a function that fills a segment of a chart with color, based on a defined range or sequence of dates. In this video, we’ll look at when to use a fill range, how to create a custom fill range, how to save a particular range for future use and how to add recession bands.

[02 When to use Fill range] 

A fill range can be used to draw attention to a segment of the charted data, like this. Alternatively, you can use the fill range function to create an additional layer of information. In this example. We’ve added a fill range corresponding to periods of recession, creating recession bands that provide context for interpreting the chart. Once you’ve specified a custom range you can also save it if it’s something you’re likely to use again.

[03 Adding Fill range to chart - 1] 

Let’s start by adding a fill range to a chart. Right click on the chart and select fill range from the context menu. You can also use the keyboard shortcut, Ctrl+F.

[04 Adding Fill range to chart - 2] 

You’ll notice that the entire chart is filled because we haven’t defined a range yet. To do so click on the add button to define the settings for the fill range. To define more than one range, just click on add again.

[05 Customizing the Fill range] 

To customize the range, you can specify a start and end point. In the start field, the first observation for the specified date will be used. In the end field, the last observation for the specified date will be used. For example, entering 2010 in start, and 2011 in end, will give you a fill range from the first observation for 2010, to the last observation for 2011. If you hold your cursor over the start or end fields, you’ll activate a tooltip describing different options for inputting the start and end points for the range.

[06 Customizing the color] 

The default color for the fill range is based on your default stylesheet. To change the color, simply check custom, here, and select a color using the drop down menu or the advanced settings.

[07 OK and Export buttons] 

Before finishing off let’s look at the buttons at the bottom of the dialog box. Use cancel to void the task, and ok to complete it and go further. The export button allows you to save the range you just created for quick access in the future. Simply select the account you’d like to save it to, and give it a name.

[08 Import button and Using pre-defined Fill range] 

To access pre-defined and saved ranges click on import. You can either select from ranges created by you and your colleagues, or from a list of ranges defined by Macrobond.

[09 Recession bands - 1] 

A quick way to apply recession bands to your chart is to select from the list in the Macrobond library. What you have here is a list of pre-defined ranges based on periods of recession in different countries. Where relevant, the source is referenced in parentheses. Ranges without a source listed are calculated by Macrobond.

[10 Recession bands - 2] 

Let’s select the US recession range from NBER, and press ok. As you can see, there is a new row for every date range corresponding to a period of recession in the US. You can customize these ranges in the same way as before. When you’re done, click OK, to complete the task.