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Excel Video 104 covers moving averages, another way to use a trendline in your chart. A moving average is simply an average over the last several periods of data in a chart. We chose to use a three month moving average, so Excel averages the last three months on the chart and plots the result for us. Note that since we’re using a three month moving average, our moving average trendline doesn’t start until we have three months to average on the chart.
Moving averages are a good way to smooth out data. If you have daily collections data and want to get a better feel for trends, moving averages might be just what you’re looking for.
Stay tuned. Next time we’ll set aside financial data and apply trendlines to clinical data.