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I've been playing with WeightedData and wanted a financial engineering example, a colleague suggested working with the fractional return (FinancialData["Name","FractionalChange") of a weighted portfolio.

Things were going well until I tried to build a Manipulate:

{{Style[DateString[fractionalChanges[[1, day, 1]], {"DayName", " ", "Day", " ", 
   "MonthName", " ", "Year"}], "Text"], SpanFromLeft},
{Style["Unweighted Mean Fractional Change:", "Text"], 
Style[ToString@Mean[fractionalChanges[[All, day, 2]]], "Text"]},
{Style["Weighted Mean Fractional Change:", "Text"], 
Style[ToString@Mean[allWeightedFChanges[[day]]], "Text"]},
 Plot[{PDF[HistogramDistribution[allWeightedFChanges[[day]], 10], 
    x], PDF[HistogramDistribution[
     allWeightedFChanges[[day]]["InputData"], 10], x]}, {x, -0.03,
    0.03}, Filling -> Axis, PlotStyle -> {Red, Blue},
  PlotLegends -> {"Weighted Fractional \nChange Distribution", 
    "Unweighted Fractional \nChange Distribution"}, 
  AxesLabel -> {"Fractional Change", " "}], {700, 280}, 
 ImageSizeAction -> "ResizeToFit", Alignment -> {Center, Center}],
 SpanFromLeft}}, Frame -> All], {day, 1, 253, 1},
Initialization :> (thirtyRandomStocks = 
RandomChoice[FinancialData["FTSE100", "Members"], 30];
fractionalChanges = 
Chop@Map[FinancialData[#, "FractionalChange", DatePlus[-360]] &, 
stockWeights = RandomInteger[{100, 10000}, 30];
allFChange = fractionalChanges[[All, All, 2]];
allWeightedFChanges = 
Table[WeightedData[allFChange[[All, i]], stockWeights], {i, 1, 
    Length[allFChange[[i, All]]], {i, 1, 

I get an "Initialization Time Out" error and can't figure out how to give the Manipulate more time to initialise.

Therefore, I have two questions:

  • How can I give Mathematica more time to initialise, or else ensure the Manipulate gets the necessary data for the calculations?
  • Note: This Manipulate will always be used within notebooks, so Free CDF limitations aren't important for me at this point.
  • Are there any suggestions you'd be willing to share to improve the code in general? I'm aware that if you look closely I'm not working with the data correctly; allWeightedFChanges doesn't really do what it should do.
share|improve this question
First thing I'd do is to pay close attention to the reason of slow initialization. A quick guess is that this is due to FinancialData, so I'd start by caching it outside your Manipulate code if I were you. – Leonid Shifrin Feb 2 '13 at 16:46
@LeonidShifrin, I'd like to be able to use this Manipulate without having Initialization Cells if at all possible. Cormulion's answer below is probably the fastest way to do this. – Martin John Hadley Feb 3 '13 at 17:28
Sure. Mu suggestion was anyway coming from general common sense and not necessarily taking into account your specific situation. – Leonid Shifrin Feb 3 '13 at 17:46
Understandable, I usually employ common sense when building things up and then it goes out the window when I attempt to dump everything within a Manipulate. DynamicModule would have provided me with more flexibility but I wanted a quick solution. Thanks again for commenting. – Martin John Hadley Feb 3 '13 at 18:28
Sure, no problem. – Leonid Shifrin Feb 3 '13 at 18:37
up vote 7 down vote accepted

Probably better to heed Leonid's advice to re-configure, but, with SynchronousInitialization -> False added I got this after a while:


share|improve this answer
Thanks @cormullion, I guess I just need to adjust my DatePlus value so that "a while" is "a little while". – Martin John Hadley Feb 3 '13 at 17:31

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