Scraping web data in R

August 10, 2011

(This article was first published on Modern Tool Making, and kindly contributed to R-bloggers)

In my last post, I went through a lot of effort to scrape the PMI index off the ISM website.  It turns out that was unnecessary effort, as commentator “senne” pointed out that this index is available from FRED, with the symbol NAPM.  I’ve updated my code, which now pulls all the data straight from FRED.

However, it was surprisingly easy to scrape web data into R, using the readHTMLTable function in the XML package.  I thought I’d keep the code I used on my blog, as it’s a good example of how easily you can pull web data into R.

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