One of the simplest – and coolest – things even a beginner can do on Bloomberg is to produce a company share price graph.  If you’ve never done this before – or if the very thought fills you with horror – read on. This post will show you how.

The first time we meet the Bloomberg price graph tends to be when browsing through a company’s equities menu. Find a company first using whichever method you prefer and from its equities menu, if you use it, select option <GP Line Chart>.

choose-GP

Selecting <GP> should take you instantly to a 12 month price chart, looking a lot like that displayed below (well, it should if you’re looking at M&S!). The top panel of the graph displays share price and the lower panel indicates the volume of shares traded on any particular date.

pre-formatted-chart

Very nice, I hear you say, but is that it?  Well, no, of course it’s not.  This is Bloomberg.  There are lots of things you can do here to make your chart more exciting or relevant.  You can…

  1. Select another pre-defined time period. Use the options (1D, 3D, etc.) at the top-left of the chart to select.
  2. Define your own time period.  Use the orange date boxes to create your own fixed date range. (NB: In Bloomberg anything in an orange box can be clicked on and edited).
  3. Add in competitor companies or indices for comparison purposes. Click on ‘Security / Study’ at the top right to do this.
  4. Annotate your graph with events in the company’s financial year – flag up acquisition dates, dividend payment dates etc. – and view their effects on share price. Click on ‘Event’ to view the available options (see the image below for some dividend flags).
  5. Bloomberg’s default chart format is a line chart, but those of you who want more detail can change to a candlestick graph or similar by clicking on the drop-down arrow above the chart.
  6. Normalise your graph. Give all the datasets a starting value of 100 to track their fluctuations against one-another. See below. Available via the ‘Edit’ function.
  7. Change backgrounds and line colours from defaults. Available via the Edit function.

normalised

Once your graph is complete, simply right-click on it and copy the image to the clipboard, then paste it straight into MS Word or Excel. If you would rather download the data behind it, right-click and choose to copy the data instead.

If you’d like to know more, or to arrange a Bloomberg taster session, contact MIRC staff.

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