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One hundred most interesting charts of 2017: According to Goldman Sachs

Straight from the vampire squid’s mouth, I kid you not.  For a firm that traditionally has eschewed technical analysis, this piece is quite an eye opener, both in terms of the quantity and range of charts used and the interesting format in which some are presented.  I think that they, like so many in financial media, have embraced the idea that a picture’s worth one hundred words – and that readers like, and ‘get’ info graphics.

The underlying theme to the trends they have researched is ‘incumbents defending against disruption’; think Amazon versus the high street, Uber and black cabs – so very on-trend.  I think that the capex chart on page 3 would be very useful to stock pickers.  It gives you a broad brush picture of which industry sectors might be worth investigating in terms of conventional technical analysis and which are probably the downtrodden.  Their heat maps on this subject (pages 4 and 5), while slightly confusing at first, are another good way of focusing attention.  This idea, in a three-dimensional format, is used extensively when displaying implied option volatility.

Pie charts and histograms, children’s favourites, pop up as do rebasing charts where everything starts at 100 making percentage changes really obvious.  A real surprise on page 11 where they measure a nation’s capital city in terms of it’s distance from the equator – and what this means for per capita GDP; Scandis are right up there.  On the same page: the share of cash transactions by value, data courtesy of Transparency International/Euromonitor; have a guess where cash is king.  Population distribution curves by age groups, subdivided into native and foreign workers, in 7 developed countries very interesting too – and look like something your dentist might hand out.  And just to keep the snowflakes happy, the last page has a chart of global surface temperature since 1951 – and the only way is not necessarily up!

First spotted on Zero Hedge’s web site December 17th 2017,  before you print this out I must warn that it really ought to be in colour, and that it’s 23 pages long.  Today I’m wondering whether Mifid II rules mean that when it comes to research, more is more.

Wishing you a Happy New Year!

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The views and opinions expressed on the STA’s blog do not necessarily represent those of the Society of Technical Analysts (the “STA”), or of any officer, director or member of the STA. The STA makes no representations as to the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of any information on the blog or found by following any link on blog, and none of the STA, STA Administrative Services or any current or past executive board members are liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. None of the information on the STA’s blog constitutes investment advice.

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