New package: GetBCBData

April 14, 2019
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The Central Bank of Brazil (BCB) offers access to its SGS system (sistema gerenciador de series temporais) with a official API available here.

With time, I find myself using more and more of the available datasets in my regular research and studies. Over last weekend I decided to write my own API package that would make my life a lot easier.

Package GetBCBData can fetch data efficiently and rapidly:

  • Use of a caching system with package memoise to speed up repeated requests of data;
  • Users can utilize all cores of the machine (parallel computing) when fetching a large batch of time series;
  • Allows the choice for format output: long (row oriented, tidy data) or wide (column oriented)
  • Error handling internally. Even if requested series does not exist, the function will still return all results.

Installation

# CRAN (official release) - IN CHECK
install.packages('GetBCBData')

# Github (dev version)
devtools::install_github('msperlin/GetBCBData')

A simple example

Let’s have a look at unemployment rates around the world. After searching for the ids in the SGS system, we find the ids for 6 countries and set it as input id.

Now, lets download the data with GetBCBData:

#devtools::install_github('msperlin/GetBCBData')

library(GetBCBData)
library(tidyverse)

my.countries <- c('Germany', 'Canada', 'USA', 
                  'France', 'Italy', 'Japan')

my.ids <- c(3785:3790)

names(my.ids) <- paste0('Unemp. rate - ', my.countries)

df.bcb <- gbcbd_get_series(id = my.ids ,
                           first.date = '2000-01-01',
                           last.date = Sys.Date())
## 
## Fetching Unemp. rate - Germany [3785] from BCB-SGS with cache 
##   Found 199 observations
## Fetching Unemp. rate - Canada [3786] from BCB-SGS with cache 
##   Found 200 observations
## Fetching Unemp. rate - USA [3787] from BCB-SGS with cache 
##   Found 200 observations
## Fetching Unemp. rate - France [3788] from BCB-SGS with cache 
##   Found 199 observations
## Fetching Unemp. rate - Italy [3789] from BCB-SGS with cache 
##   Found 199 observations
## Fetching Unemp. rate - Japan [3790] from BCB-SGS with cache 
##   Found 199 observations
glimpse(df.bcb)
## Observations: 1,196
## Variables: 4
## $ ref.date     2000-01-01, 2000-02-01, 2000-03-01, 2000-04-01, 200…
## $ value        8.2, 8.1, 8.1, 8.0, 8.0, 8.0, 7.9, 7.9, 7.9, 7.8, 7.…
## $ id.num       3785, 3785, 3785, 3785, 3785, 3785, 3785, 3785, 3785…
## $ series.name  "Unemp. rate - Germany", "Unemp. rate - Germany", "U…
p <- ggplot(df.bcb, aes(x = ref.date, y = value) ) +
  geom_line() + 
  labs(title = 'Unemploymnent Rates Around the World', 
       subtitle = paste0(min(df.bcb$ref.date), ' to ', max(df.bcb$ref.date)),
       x = '', y = 'Percentage*100') + facet_wrap(~series.name)


print(p)

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