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How to Use 'My Data Lists'

With a user account, you can store lists of economic data series. Data lists can be used to download series cross-tabulated by date or save links to series pages. Below is a step-by-step tutorial.

  1. Login to your user account. If you do not have a user account, please see:

    Register User Account
    My Account Help


    Login Page


  2. After logging in, you will be forwarded to the 'My Account' index page. Select either of the 'Data Lists' links on this page.

    My Account Page


  3. On your 'Data Lists' page, select 'Add New Data list'. Enter a name for your new data list. For this tutorial, we will use 'Inflation Indices'. After pressing the submit button, you will be returned to your 'Data Lists' page. You should now see a link to your new data list. Note: Currently, we have only 1 data list. If we wanted to add more data lists, we would repeat the instructions in this step. You may create up to 25 different data lists.


    Data Lists Page


  4. The next step is to add data series to your data list. Select the 'Add to My Data Lists' link on any data series page in the 'FRED® - Economic Data' section. For the 'Inflation Indices' data list, go to the 'Consumer Price Index For All Urban Consumers: All Items' data series page and select 'Add to My Data Lists.'

    Data Series Page


  5. You will be forwarded to the 'Add to My Data Lists' form. This form is used to add series to the data list you select. In our case, select the 'Inflation Indices' data list from the drop-down menu, select the checkbox next to the Series ID, and press the 'Add Series to My Data List' button.

    Add to My Data Lists Form


  6. The next page is the 'Data List - Inflation Indices' page. The data series 'Consumer Price Index For All Urban Consumers: All Items' is now in your data list. This feature is useful for bookmarking favorite data series.

    From this page you can download your data list, edit the name of or delete your data list, or remove a series from your data list by selecting the checkbox next to the Series ID and clicking 'Remove Series.'

    Data List Page


  7. The above instructions added one series to a data list. In one step it is also possible to add up to 50 series from any FRED® or ALFRED® category, release, or search results page.

    We will return to the FRED® homepage and choose the category 'Consumer Price Indexes (CPI)' to continue the tutorial.

    Choose 3 series from the Consumer Price Indexes category by selecting the checkboxes to the left of the Series ID's. Alternately, choose all series in the category by clicking the 'All' link. Next, click the 'Add to My Data List' button.

    Category Page


  8. You will be forwarded to the 'Add to My Data List' form. For this tutorial, we will choose Optional Vintage Dates (for further information on Vintages and Vintage Dates, please refer to the ALFRED® Help page). If optional Vintage Dates are not chosen, the data currently in FRED® will be placed in the data list.

    For the series CPIAUCSL we will choose all available Vintage Dates by clicking 'All.'
    For the series CPIENGSL we will choose the Vintage Date 2004-10-19.
    For the series CPILFESL we will choose user-defined Vintage Dates 2004-12-31 and 2005-12-31.

    Click the 'Add Series to My Data Lists' button.

    Add Vintages to My Data List


  9. You will be forwarded to a form from which you can choose to download the data list, edit the name of the data list, or delete the data list. You can also choose to remove series and vintages from this page by clicking the checkbox next to the Series ID and pressing the 'Remove Series' button.

    We will choose to download the data.

    Download Data List with Vintage Data


  10. This will take you to the list's 'Download Data' page. On this page, you can choose to download zipped text and Excel files. Note: Additional unzip software is required to uncompress these files. For our purposes, we will choose the Excel version.

    Download Data Page

    Notice the 'README' and 'Monthly' tabs along the bottom of the worksheet. The 'README' tab lists the descriptions of each data series in your data list. The remaining tabs group data series by frequency. The 'Inflation Indices' data list contains monthly series.


    README Excel Tab


    The monthly series share a common date column. In other words, the monthly series have been cross-tabulated by date. Series are grouped by distinct frequencies to avoid confusion and gaps in dates. As an example, quarterly series would be placed in a 'Quarterly' tab.


    Monthly Excel Tab


    The text format is similar to the Excel format with one exception. The tabs in the Excel version are stored as separate text files.


  11. To add more categories or specific series and vintages to your data list, return to the FRED® or ALFRED® homepage, choose a category or release page or search for a topic — and repeat steps 7-8.

Conclusion

'My Data Lists' is an easy-to-use personalization feature that allows you to save links to data series pages and download data series cross-tabulated by date in Excel and text formats. You can add up to 25 different data lists, and each data list can contain 1000 or less data series.


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