Visualizing the Supply Chain

Growing up, I’d never heard of the supply chain. Toys were either on the shelves or there weren’t. Today, I hear relatively young kids talking about how the supply chain is preventing them from getting the toys they see online in less than three days. It’s amazing actually.

Last week, I was looking at the New York Federal Reserve website trying to find their model that predicts recessions. I didn’t find it, but I did come across an index that they keep that tracks the supply chain.

The image below shows the ups and downs of the supply chain, and the gray band is something that I added to reflect the standard noise around the index. It helps highlight the dramatic issues in the supply chain.

It’s interesting that there was a period after the initial part of the pandemic when things were back to ‘normal.’ Maybe that’s when the toilet paper was back in the stores, but before everything else was disrupted, I don’t know.

I’ll keep posting this periodically – this data is a little stale.