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Visualizing a day of financial transactions on NASDAQ part 2

This is a followup to yesterday’s post on the visualization of a day’s worth of trading data on the NASDAQ stock exchange. We’ve taken another look at the same dataset a bit more closely. In the examples that follow, each of which represents a single minute of trading, the image on the left uses a unique color to represent each trader, and the image on the right uses a unique color to represent each stock. So on the left hand (trader) side, a big grouping of the same color means that a single trader is buying or selling stocks. And on the right hand (stock) side, a big color block means a single stock being purchased in lots of different transactions.

In this first example, we see that a single trader (UBS, in this case) is responsible for the majority of the shares in this minute:

and that they’re regularly trading a single stock at a single price at the same amounts (the yellow dots in a row):

Here we see that UBS buys a fixed amount of a stock at a fixed price, very steadily, stops abruptly, and then starts trading a different stock at a slightly lower price (the dark green and then blue dots on the right):

Here we see a single trader (the orangish square at left) perform a burst of concentrated activity within precisely deliniated margins, making small trades across a wide range of stocks (the kaleidosopic square on the right)

And here we see a similarly trader-centric burst (in blue, at left) spread across a multiplicity of small stock trades, just before the market closes for the day.

Published: 07.25.12
Updated: 09.20.22

About Stamen

Stamen is a globally recognized strategic design partner and one of the most established cartography and data visualization studios in the industry. For over two decades, Stamen has been helping industry giants, universities, and civic-minded organizations alike bring their ideas to life through designing and storytelling with data. We specialize in translating raw data into interactive visuals that inform, inspire and incite action. At the heart of this is our commitment to research and ensuring we understand the challenges we face. We embrace ambiguity, we thrive in data, and we exist to build tools that educate and inspire our audiences to act.