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Organization of Files


Datastream is designed specifically for navigating large amounts of data. Types of data are organized by code numbers. Different representations or methods of retrieving and displaying data are similarly organized by program numbers. Finding these codes and program numbers can be the most difficult aspect of Datastream searching. Commands may be passed to the program in 3 ways: menus, control panel buttons, and the command line.

The image above is a picture of the main program window. Each of the pertinent control options will be discussed in detail in this manual. Control functions in Datastream fall into two basic categories, those that are aimed toward finding program numbers and others that are for finding data codes.

Types of Requests

The type of request is the 1st question one must answer. The 7 possible answers, are listed in the image below. A choice may be selected by clicking on the chosen text with the left mouse button of the computer. Selections in this category mean the following:
  • REPORTS: Produces a variety of output in tabular form. Preferred for obtaining information such as economic indicators for a country or region over a short time span
  • TIME SERIES: Produces output for a series over a specified time period for ready reference purposes.
  • GRAPHICS: Enables outputting of data in graphical format. This option is preferred if you wish to view a simple comparison of two or more statistical series.
  • DOWNLOADING DATA: Enables output of specified data in a variety of formats. A detailed description of downloading options appears later in this manual.
  • USER CREATED INFO: This option will allow you, in effect, to create your own program. Use of this option requires expert knowledge of Datastream. This option will not be discussed at length in this manual.
  • ONLINE CODE LOOKUP: Use to obtain data codes for use in all the Datastream programs. A thorough discussion of this option appears further on in this manual along with other ways of finding the codes you will need.
  • DATABASE INFO & NEWS: Select this option to view Datastream International news, including announcements of new series and services.

Finding a Program

Finding data in Datastream is basically a matter of answering questions posed by the Datastream program. The good part is that all the answers are in the form of multiple choice. The bad part is that for some questions, there are thousands of choices. Choosing a program involves two simple questions: "What type of request are you making?" and "What type of data are you requesting?". It is these 2 questions that allow Datastream to determine how data should best be retrieved.

Types of Data

Datastream contains a limited number of types of data. The main categories are listed below as they are listed by the Datastream program. Scroll up and down to view additional types available by clicking on the up and down arrows with the left mouse button. Types of data are divided into basic financial instruments and categories. Discussion of specific types of data searches follows. Definitions of these basic economic terms are available along with these discussions.