G – Get the data

As a continuation of the basics of data analysis, we are now at the first step. We know the question that we want answered – How can I use previous spending behavior to create a budget –  and now we are ready to start the analysis.

But before we can start analyzing, we need something to analyze. And therein lies the G – Get the data.

For this particular question, the data that is needed is some record of previous spending. Luckily, this information is usually tracked by your bank and can be found in your online banking. Most should also have some sort of export option, which means that the data will most likely be somewhat structured as well.

So to get the data, log in to your online banking, find your spending account, and choose to view from January through December of 2013. Then find where you can export the data. Here is an example of how it could look:

 

 

 

This should allow you to save the file, either as an excel file or as a .csv file. Find the location where you want the information to be stored, and save it there.

Congratulations, you have now completed the first step of the analysis. You have gotten the data.

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