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Charley's Swipe File #55

This stacked column-chart figure, with no space between the columns, uses legends and text to give your readers information not included in the chart.


by Charley Kyd, MBA
Microsoft Excel MVP, 2005-2014
The Father of Spreadsheet Dashboard Reports

Charley's Swipe File Chart #55When I saw a figure like this about pension funds in The Wall Street Journal, I knew I had to add it to my Swipe Files.

It wasn’t until later that I noticed it resembles one of the figures in Charley File #54.

Even so, I decided to keep it because the only thing the two figures have in common is that they both use stacked bars with no space between them. Everything else is different.

The two blocks of text display data entered in cells in a spreadsheet. This also is simple to do, if you know the trick. However, few Excel users do know the trick, which I realized recently when an Excel MVP asked me about it recently. So I'll explain it shortly.

The actual chart is simple to create. It uses stacked columns and with no gaps between them. For most Excel users, the X-axis labels—with the year appearing beneath the month—would be nearly impossible to create. However, if you’ve used any of my other swipe files, you already know how to do this. But I'll explain it as well.

Each legend shows both the percentage and dollar amount for the current period in one cell. You can see how easily this is to do if you look at the cells that each cell references.

(Continued in the documentation.)

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