Heterogeneous responses in Google Trends measures of well-being to the COVID-19 dynamic quarantines in Chile



We study how the Chilean population’s well-being responded to the strategy implemented by their health authorities, known as Dynamic Quarantine, to contain the spread of coronavirus in which municipalities periodically entered and exited lockdowns. This unique scheme, together with the population’s socioeconomic heterogeneity, facilitates the estimation of changes in this well-being as differentiated by socioeconomic status. Using Google Trends to compute measures of well-being, we find strong evidence that socioeconomic status induces heterogeneity in these changes; thus, neglecting this heterogeneity may lead to misleading prescriptions for the public policy that addresses the psychological effects of lockdowns.

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