A further look at Google mobility data

It’s been a while since I posted on the Google mobility data mainly because the Cairns data has been mostly quite benign.

Google Mobility Residential 3

Like other series we are seeing this is quite new data without any seasonal record in a period where seasonality has itself been shredded. I have included an average reluctantly because I’m not sure what an average of these unweighted disparate measures actually represents or whether it can be used as a comparison between regions.

Transit Stations are called “public transport” in the PDF version reports and will mean very different things in different regions guided by the definitions provided. Douglas parks is included in the graph as it appears to be a good indicator of visitation activity. Workplaces have some trend correlation over the series with the ABS payroll series which is also new over a similar timeframe.

So I decided to look at residential which has barely budged over recent months in Cairns close to baseline except for the short period of restrictions in August. The residential data is not equivalent to the other mobility data as it is based on time rather than activity given that everyone is at home sometime every day. This is broad state level data:

Google Mobility Residential 1

There is a question mark there around the volatile Victorian response following the export of the delta outbreak from NSW. The initial response collapsed to a 7 day moving nadir on 5th August. This was just a few days before the Victorian numbers started to take off exponentially from low levels. How fortunate we have been to live in states like Queensland and Western Australia.

What does this residential data look like in some selected regions:

Google Mobility Residential 2

Tweed Shire And Gold Coast have been included facing each other over the border. This also highlights other factors in this data. The relatively high residential stay at home for Cairns in late April was the delayed seasonal downpour with something like 800 mm of rain for the month. We made up for it in May.


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