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January 5, 2023

Charts of the Year: 2022’s most popular visualisations, Part II

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Arnaud Lieugaut
Patrick Malm
Karl-Philip Nilsson
Editor:
Keith Campbell
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A measure of geopolitical risk spikes

Featured in: Charts of the Week on March 4

We first published this chart just after Russia’s escalated invasion of Ukraine in February.

It uses a measure of risk from Economic Policy Uncertainty,an academic group that creates indices relating to policy challenges ranging from infectious diseases to wars.

Their geopolitical risk index tracks newspaper archives going back decades. Peaks occurred around 9/11 and the collapse of the Soviet Union. While tensions between Russia and the West remain elevated, geopolitical tensions are generally taking up less space in the media; the index is welldown from its March peak.

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The evolution of global tightening

Featured in: Charts of the Week on April 1

We were at the beginning of the tightening cycle when we first published this dashboard. Emerging markets had been most hawkish,anticipating Fed tightening. But Japan was the only major economy where inflation was significantly below target and its central bank opted to swim against the tide, repeating its commitment to keep long-term yields low via yield curve control.

Since then, many more central banks started hiking, while those that were already tightening became more aggressive. The doves that stand out in the dashboard today are China, Russia and Turkey. Asfor Japan, its key rate stayed negative – alone among central banks – but it recently shocked markets by widening the acceptable range for bond yields, suggesting a greater policy shift could follow.

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Inflation rips across the Eurozone

Featured in: Charts of the Week on June 24

When this heat map was first published, inflation for the euro area was 8.1 percent year-on-year. That has worsened to 10 percent.

Since then, inflation has continued its broad advance and there are fewer cooler areas on the heat map than there were in May. The only category where prices are shrinking is communications;transport price growth “slowed” to 10 percent year-on-year from early 2022’s prints of 14 percent or more.

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Inflation ravages real wages in Europe

Featured in: Charts of the Week on August 26

In the euro area, negotiated wages are falling sharply in real terms – i.e., any increase is being more than outpaced by inflation. This was the case when we published this chart, and it’s still generally true – and often even worse today, depending on the country. The Netherlands and Spain have seen a slight rebound.

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European gas worries before and after Nord Stream sabotage

Featured in: Charts of the Week on September 2

We first published this chart just weeks before the Nord Stream pipelines taking Russian gas to western Europe were damaged in an act of suspected sabotage. Even before that incident, flows from Russia were shrinking, as the chart shows; Nord Stream was taken offline for repairs. That stirred concern that Europe would have trouble filling its gas reserves in time for winter.

Even in early September, some observers had warned that Nord Stream might not reopen given the tensions with the West over Ukraine. As the updated chart shows, those voices were prescient. Europe turned to the LNG market for gas supplies and has been fortunate to experience a warmer-than-usual winter so far.

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Markets changed their view on whether the Fed would be out hiked by the BoE

Featured in: Charts of the Week on September 9

When this chart was first published, just four months ago, futures markets believed the Bank of England would be forced to hike rates a half-percentage point more than the Federal Reserve through 2023 in order to tame rampant inflation.

Today,that gap has reversed; as inflation persists, traders foresee UK rates peaking above 4.5 percent, but they believe the Fed is headed to 5 percent. Rate hikes are expected from the ECB too, but with a far lower peak rate.

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