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Live data shows impact of Coronavirus on North American industries

Purple have WiFi live in over 50,000 venues ranging from a cafe through department stores, airports, stadiums and entire cities across 128 countries. We have 160M authenticated users of more than 600M unique users that are anonymous. The data we analyze spans nearly 20 Billion visits.

Due to the ongoing pandemic, Purple has developed a live dashboard, enabling people, businesses and economists to track the real-time impact COVID-19 is having on all industries across the globe.

The impact across North American industries 

Figure 1 represents the overall % decrease in the number of visitors to restaurants across North America, the data then proceeds to drill down and segment further by different verticals. 

Figure 1. North America restaurant visitors (March)

Restaurants, which are usually consistent in visitor numbers throughout the year and impacted little by seasonality, have seen a significant decline in recent days. 

Figure 1 starts to show the regular pattern of being higher at the weekend and dipping off throughout the week but with the presence of COVID-19, even early in the month, it was disconcerting enough to discourage custom.

The trend line shows a slight uplift in visitors during the start of the previous weekend, this then drops considerably as the US begins to increase restrictions and proactive measures. 

Canada also around this time period announced that their PM’s wife, Sophie Trudeau had tested positive for Coronavirus.

Figure 2. North American footfall data (Stadiums)

Figure 2 illustrates the effect that the announcement of sport season postponement and restriction of the mass gathering is having on the number of visitors who enter stadiums and other larger venues.  

The industry has seen a huge 87% decrease in the number of visitors to its venues, this has already cost the industry $5 billion and it’s set to increase as time goes on, according to Forbes.

The United States and Canada have both imposed restrictions on all major sporting competitions, with seasons being suspended for a minimum of at least 6-8 weeks. 

It’s likely that due to the reasons mentioned above that this amount of visitor traffic will remain at this revenue losing level. 

Figure 3. North America footfall (Retail) 

The data shows us that Retail has yet to be affected in the same way that other industries have across the US and Canada. 

The reasoning behind this is likely that the majority of retail visitors are going into Supermarkets and other large grocery stores as the world has seen a large number of people stockpiling in case of a worst-case scenario.

The data shows just a 13% dip in footfall traffic, which isn’t dissimilar to the normal trend you would expect to see over a monthly period. 

However, with US cities entering lockdown in one form or another, it’s probable that this number will decrease significantly over the next few weeks. 

 Figure 4. North American hotel guests 

One of the biggest hit industries globally is Hotels, with the cancellation of major sporting events, concerts and a large proportion of the workforce currently working from home, the need for hotels has declined.

You can see the timeline of events reflected in the above graph as the month goes on, with the majority of cities and workers in isolation, the data reflects this with a 77% decrease in hotel guests across the region.

Check out our live tracker here

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