As noted by Olof, GISS reported a small rise in January, from 1.11°C in December, to 1.13°C. As in my previous post, indications for January had been mixed. Satellite indices rose quite strongly. The local NCEP/NCAR index rose by a small amount, but others, such as Karsten's, which are GFS based, showed large reductions. Then TempLS also showed reductions, and also quite inconsistent - TempLS grid down 0.07°C and grid down 0.18°C
For GISS this month, I'll show their polar projection, because as Olof suggests, I think this is the key to the variability.
There are three main features. A big very warm region around the Arctic, but a large cool region around the Antarctic. In the context of present warmth, that cool Antarctic is cold indeed, and probably does more to bring down the temperature than the more intense cold in a band from Europe to China. So the end result depends on how the various indices add up these competing effects, two in regions lacking good coverage. GISS interpolates to give good weighting to the poles, and this boosts the Arctic effect. Normally I would expect TempLS mesh to match that, but apparently this time, it didn't quite. Or maybe it gave more weight to the Antarctic. TempLS grid definitely underweights the poles, and so the Europe cold effect dominates.
On this basis, I think it is likely that NOAA and HADCRUT will show a reduction for January.
To remark on where this stands with El Nino - on past experience the next four months or so are likely to be the peak. So the January rise is rather small. On the other hand, December (and October) had risen quite a lot, so it may just be a broadening of he peak.
Below the fold, I'll show the usual comparison between the GISS flat map and TempLS grid.
Here is GISS:
And here is TempLS grid:
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