Graphs and Stuff

Welcome to the Graphs and Stuff blog. Stay tuned for regular charts as economic data is published. Please also check out the Fixed vs Variable and the Rent vs Buy calculators.

Please note that nothing published here constitutes financial advice.

Comparison of Sydney and Melbourne Outbreaks - August 12 2021

Sydney and Melbourne Exactly a Year Apart

View Large Chart

This is an update to these posts: Sydney vs Melbourne Outbreaks - 30 July

Sydney vs Melbourne Outbreaks - 4 August

Please see the above posts for additional discussion.

Sydney's use of public transit is edging up even as hospitalisations continue to increase. It's puzzling to see the delay in the tightening of restrictions as the slow rise in cases and hospitalisations has been apparent for weeks now. Yesterday's expansion of the tighter lockdowns to additional local government areas makes sense - the infection rate is low enough to be within striking distance of reducing case numbers. What's puzzling is the reluctance to tighten and enforce a little bit more.

Perhaps there was hope that increasing vaccination numbers would naturally lower the infection rate, but this strategy is quite slow, with each percent of additional vaccination adding less than a percent reduction in infections. On the other hand, a reduction in mobility is both possible - as evidenced by Melbourne's experience last year - and effective in a mechanical "if you're not moving around, you're not spreading the virus" kind of way.

Next week we should start getting data that includes the effects of the widened restrictions in Sydney. The flip side is that the hospitalisations presented are for the state, not the city alone, and therefore we may, sadly, see a rise in the number of hospitalisations given the seeding that appears to be going on throughout the state.

About These Images The chart is based on data from Apple's mobility dataset.