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Visualizing average annual expenditures

on Sat, 12/08/2012 - 04:33

The previous blog post was about the makeover of a pair pie/donut charts, the first example from the Forbes Graph Makeover Contest, launched this week by Naomi Robbins. The contest requested readers to suggest alternative graphical representations for a graph and a table. 

I'm now trying to makeover the second example, a table presenting the average annual expenditures for selected categories of consuming spending, by housing tenure from year 1986 and 2010. See below the original table.

Probably beacuse of my background as data anayst in public health, which is highly influenced by biostatistics and epidemiology, my proposal is more classic in term of data visualization. Take a look at it below and don't forget to interact with it hovering the mouse over any objetc in the visuslization in order to get detailed information.

The story here for me includes two main elements: 1) magnitude of average annual expenditure by housing tenure across expenditure categories and subcategories; and 2) level of expenditure change from 1986 to 2010.

Key findings:

  1. Homeowners spend more than renters in annual expeditures (total) and across spending categories and subcategories.
  2. There is almost no change in average annula expenditures (total) from 1986 to 2010 in both homeowners and renters
  3. Homeowners and renters increased spending on housing, personal insurance and pensions, and healthcare
  4. The increased spending in healthcare was highly determined by health insurance, which increased 145% by homeowners and 123% by renters
  5. Both homeowners and renters decreased spending on apparel and apparel services, transportation and food.
  6. Apparel and apparel services was the category with higher decrease in spending in both homeoeners and renters, but even higher in homeowners.
  7. In spite of the decreased spending on transportation, homeowners and renters increased spending on gasoline and motor oil, that is one subcategory of transportation.
  8. Homeowners increased spending on Entertaiment but renters decreased spending in this category.

Any feedback, recommendation, suggestion and critic are welcome. 

My best,


P.S. Base on critiques and recommendations from Naomi Robins to my entry, I re-do this data visualization and you can look at it in a new post "Re-doing the Average Annual Expenditures".

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