5 Best Ways to Change the Frequency of a Pandas Period Object from Seconds to Daily

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πŸ’‘ Problem Formulation: When working with time series data in pandas, you may encounter Period objects with frequencies set to seconds. In some cases, you might want to resample or change this period frequency to a daily frequency. For instance, if you have a Period object representing the time “2023-01-01 12:00:00” with a secondly frequency, you may want to convert it to the equivalent daily frequency, which would be simply “2023-01-01”. This article explores various methods to perform such a conversion.

Method 1: Using the asfreq() Method

This method involves using the asfreq() function available on pandas Period objects, which allows for frequency conversion. The target frequency can be specified with standard frequency aliases like ‘D’ for daily frequency.

Here’s an example:

import pandas as pd

# Create a period with secondly frequency
secondly_period = pd.Period('2023-01-01 12:00:00', freq='S')

# Convert to daily frequency
daily_period = secondly_period.asfreq('D')

Output:

Period('2023-01-01', 'D')

The asfreq() method easily converts the secondly frequency period to a daily frequency period, effectively truncating the time to the start of the day, as seen in the output.

Method 2: Using the to_timestamp() Method and normalize()

The to_timestamp() function converts a Period object to a Timestamp object. Coupled with the normalize() method, it can standardize the time to midnight, effectively creating a daily frequency when converted back to a Period object.

Here’s an example:

import pandas as pd

# Create a period with secondly frequency
secondly_period = pd.Period('2023-01-01 12:00:00', freq='S')

# Convert to a timestamp and normalize to midnight
normalized_timestamp = secondly_period.to_timestamp().normalize()

# Convert back to a period with daily frequency
daily_period = pd.Period(normalized_timestamp, freq='D')

Output:

Period('2023-01-01', 'D')

Here, the timestamp is normalized so the time portion is set to midnight. Then, when we convert it back to a Period object with ‘D’ frequency, it represents the whole day, thus effectively changing our period to daily frequency.

Method 3: Creating a New Period Object

A simple way to change the frequency is to extract the date component and create a new Period object with daily frequency directly. This method is straightforward and doesn’t require modifying the original Period object.

Here’s an example:

import pandas as pd

# Create a period with secondly frequency
secondly_period = pd.Period('2023-01-01 12:00:00', freq='S')

# Extract the date and create a new daily period
daily_period = pd.Period(secondly_period.strftime('%Y-%m-%d'), freq='D')

Output:

Period('2023-01-01', 'D')

This code directly uses the date part of the original Period object to create a new Period object with a ‘D’ frequency. It’s a clean and intuitive approach.

Method 4: Using the replace() Function on the Timestamp Object

The replace() function can modify individual components of a datetime object. By converting the Period object to a Timestamp, using replace() to zero-out the time components, and converting back to a Period, we can achieve our goal.

Here’s an example:

import pandas as pd

# Create a period with secondly frequency
secondly_period = pd.Period('2023-01-01 12:00:00', freq='S')

# Convert to a timestamp and replace time with zeros
timestamp = secondly_period.to_timestamp().replace(hour=0, minute=0, second=0)

# Convert back to a period with daily frequency
daily_period = pd.Period(timestamp, freq='D')

Output:

Period('2023-01-01', 'D')

Using replace() ensures the new timestamp represents the start of the day, which is then used to create a daily frequency Period object.

Bonus One-Liner Method 5: Using Date Attribute and Creating a New Period

This concise one-liner leverages the date() attribute of the Timestamp object to obtain the date, and then creates a new Period object with daily frequency using this date.

Here’s an example:

import pandas as pd

# Create a period with secondly frequency
secondly_period = pd.Period('2023-01-01 12:00:00', freq='S')

# Create a daily period in one line
daily_period = pd.Period(secondly_period.to_timestamp().date(), freq='D')

Output:

Period('2023-01-01', 'D')

This approach is perhaps the shortest, utilizing the date part of the original Period’s corresponding Timestamp.

Summary/Discussion

  • Method 1: asfreq() Method. Simple and straightforward. The result is immediate with no intermediate steps. However, it may not provide much control for more complex frequency manipulations.
  • Method 2: to_timestamp() and normalize(). Involves an intermediate conversion step. It’s flexible and intuitive for those familiar with Timestamp objects. However, it is more verbose than necessary for simple tasks.
  • Method 3: New Period Object Creation. Very direct. It avoids the need for conversions and is easy to understand. On the flip side, it might not always be the most concise approach.
  • Method 4: replace() Function. This approach offers fine control over individual time components. It is very explicit, which can be a strength or a weakness depending on the context.
  • Method 5: One-Liner with Date Attribute. Fast and concise. Great for quick scripting or interactive work, but lacks explicitness which could be a drawback for readability.