COVID-19 short-term forecasts Confirmed 2020-04-17


Disclaimer

  • Forecasts produced by Jennie Castle, Jurgen Doornik, and David Hendry, researchers at the University of Oxford. These are our forecasts, and should not be considered official forecasts from, or endorsed by, any of: University of Oxford, Oxford Martin School, Nuffield College, or Magdalen College.
  • These forecasts are short term time-series extrapolations of the data. They are not based on epidemiological modelling or simulations. The documentation that is provided is still in progress and not peer reviewed. All forecasts are uncertain: their success can only be determined afterwards. Many mitigation strategies are in place, which, if successful, invalidate our forecasts. An explanation of our methods is provided below.

Recent changes

[2020-03-24] Our forecasts are starting to overestimate in some cases. This was always expected to happen when the increase starts to slow down. Scenario forecasts that are based on what happened in China earlier this year, but only for Italy and Spain sofar.
[2020-03-26] Scenario forecasts that are based on what happened in China earlier this year, only for Italy.
[2020-03-31] Scenario forecasts, based on what happened in China earlier this year, are presented for several countries (line marked with x). Created more plausible 90% confidence bands (dotted line in same colour).
[2020-04-02] Now including more US States, based on New York Times data. And the world.
[2020-04-06] Added a post hoc estimate of the peak number of cases. This needs at least three confirmed observations (four for deaths) after the event. It is based on the averaged smooth trend, and can change later or be a local peak. It is marked with a vertical line with the date label, or a date with left arrow in the bottom left corner of the graph. This is backported to 2020-04-04.
[2020-04-08] Minor correction to peak estimates. Added table with scenario forecasts.
[2020-04-09] Added table with estimated peak dates (if happened) and dates to and since the peak. Note that this can be a local peak, and subsequent re-acceleration (or data revisions) can result in a new peak later.
[2020-04-10] Updated documentation with better description of short-term estimates and peak determination.
[2020-04-16] Added scenario forecasts to all graphs now. This would now be the preferred forecast for most.
This is the first time with a peak in confirmed UK cases (also for deaths, but this is uncertain because it is at the same date).
[2020-04-17] Bird and Nielsen look into nowcasting death counts in England.

Further information

  • We believe these forecasts fill a useful gap in the short run. They give an indication of what is likely to happen in the next few days, removing some aspect of surprise. Moreover, a noticeable drop in comparison to the extrapolations could be an indication that the implemented policies are having some impact. It is difficult to understand exponential growth. We hope that these forecasts may help to convince viewers to adhere to the policies implemented by their respective governments, and keep all arguments factual and measured.
  • We use the data repository for the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Visual Dashboard operated by the Johns Hopkins University Center for Systems Science and Engineering. This is updated daily, but we tend to update our forecasts only every other day.
    US state data as of 2020-03-28 is courtesy of the New York Times.
  • We can only provide forecasts of what is measured. If confirmed cases are an underestimate of actual cases, then our forecasts will also be underestimates. No other epidemiological data is used. Data definition and collection differs between countries and may change over time.
  • We will update the methodology as we learn what is happening in the next few days or weeks. Once the number of cases levels off, there is no need to provide these forecasts anymore.
  • Countries where the counts are very low or stable have been omitted.
  • The graphs have dates on the horizontal axis (yyyy-mm-dd) and cumulative counts on the vertical axis. They show
    1. bold dark grey line (with circles): observed counts (Johns Hopkins CSSE);
    2. many light grey lines (with open circles): forecasts using different model settings and starting up to four periods back;
    3. red line (with open circles): single forecasts path using default model settings;
    4. black line (with crosses): average of all forecasts, recentered on the last observation;
    5. thin green lines: some indication of uncertainty around the red forecasts, but we do not know how reliable that is.
    Both the red line forecasts and the black lines are also given in the tables above. These forecasts differ, we are currently inclined to use the average forecasts.
  • The forecasts are constructed as follows:
    1. An overall `trend' is extracted by taking a window of the data at a time. In each window we draw `straight lines' which are selected using an automatic econometric procedure (`machine learning'). All straight lines are collected and averaged, giving the trend.
    2. Forecasts are made using the estimated trend, but we note that this must be done carefully, because simply extrapolating the flexible insample trend would lead to wildly fluctuating forecast. We use the `Cardt' method, which has been found to work well in other settings.
    3. Residuals from the trend are also forecast, and combined with trend forecasts into an overall forecast.
  • Scenario forecasts are constructed very differently: smooth versions of the Chinese experience are matched at different lag lengths with the path of each country. This probably works best from the peak, or the slowdown just before (but we include it for the UK nonetheless).
  • The forecast evaluation shows past forecasts, together with the outcomes (in the grey line with circles).
  • EU-BS is Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania together.
  • This paper describes the methodology and gives further references, but remains preliminary. Also preliminary is the documentation of the medium term forecasts.

Confirmed count average forecast Europe (bold black line in graphs) 2020-04-18 to 2020-04-24

DateUKEUATBEBSCZDEDKESFIFRGRIEITNLPLPTROSENOCH
2020-04-17 108692 830538 14595 36138 6088 6549 141397 7073 190839 3489 147969 2224 13980 172434 30449 8379 19022 8067 13216 6937 27078
2020-04-18 114000 853000 14700 37900 6180 6670 144000 7240 196000 3590 155000 2240 14900 176000 31500 8700 19500 8500 13800 7030 27400
2020-04-19 119000 872000 14900 40000 6270 6770 147000 7390 200000 3680 162000 2270 16000 179000 32400 9000 20000 9000 14300 7110 27700
2020-04-20 125000 890000 15000 42300 6350 6860 149000 7540 204000 3760 170000 2290 17200 182000 33400 9300 20500 9600 14800 7190 28000
2020-04-21 131000 908000 15100 44600 6430 6960 151000 7690 208000 3850 179000 2310 18500 185000 34500 9600 21000 10200 15300 7280 28300
2020-04-22 137000 925000 15300 47100 6510 7050 153000 7840 212000 3940 188000 2340 19900 188000 35500 10000 21500 10800 15800 7360 28600
2020-04-23 144000 943000 15400 49800 6600 7150 156000 8000 216000 4030 197000 2360 21400 192000 36600 10300 22000 11400 16300 7450 28900
2020-04-24 151000 960000 15500 52600 6690 7260 158000 8160 220000 4120 207000 2390 23100 195000 37800 10600 22600 12100 16900 7530 29200

Confirmed count average forecast (bold black line in graphs) 2020-04-18 to 2020-04-24

DateAustraliaBrazilCanadaIranMalaysiaPhilippinesSouth AfricaUSUS-CAUS-COUS-CTUS-DCUS-FLUS-GAUS-ILUS-LAUS-MAUS-MIUS-NJUS-NYUS-WAWorld
2020-04-17 6522 33682 32813 79494 5251 5878 2783 699706 29398 9047 16809 2476 24745 16658 27575 23118 34402 29952 78467 229642 11445 3063712
2020-04-18 6560 36600 35100 81000 5350 6100 2910 731000 30600 9500 17700 2600 25700 17500 29000 23600 36400 31000 82000 238000 11700 3212000
2020-04-19 6590 39500 37500 82400 5470 6330 3020 763000 31900 10000 18500 2700 26600 18100 30300 24100 38200 31900 85000 246000 11800 3387000
2020-04-20 6620 42500 40100 83900 5590 6560 3140 797000 33200 10600 19300 2810 27500 18700 31800 24500 40100 33000 89000 255000 12000 3569000
2020-04-21 6650 45900 42900 85400 5720 6810 3260 833000 34500 11200 20200 2920 28400 19300 33200 25000 42100 34000 92000 264000 12200 3759000
2020-04-22 6670 49500 45800 86900 5840 7060 3390 871000 36000 11900 21100 3030 29400 20000 34700 25500 44200 35100 96000 273000 12300 3957000
2020-04-23 6700 53400 49000 88400 5960 7330 3520 911000 37500 12500 22000 3160 30400 20700 36300 25900 46500 36300 100000 283000 12500 4167000
2020-04-24 6720 57600 52500 90000 6070 7610 3660 954000 39100 13300 23000 3280 31500 21400 38000 26400 48900 37500 104000 293000 12700 4384000

Confirmed count forecast Europe (bold red line in graphs) 2020-04-18 to 2020-04-24

DateUKEUATBEBSCZDEDKESFIFRGRIEITNLPLPTROSENOCH
2020-04-17 108692 830538 14595 36138 6088 6549 141397 7073 190839 3489 147969 2224 13980 172434 30449 8379 19022 8067 13216 6937 27078
2020-04-18 113000 850000 14700 37700 6170 6650 144000 7230 196000 3580 152000 2240 14700 175000 31300 8700 19400 8300 13800 7020 27400
2020-04-19 117000 869000 14900 39600 6250 6750 146000 7390 200000 3660 157000 2250 15400 178000 32200 9000 19700 8700 14300 7100 27700
2020-04-20 122000 889000 15000 41500 6330 6860 149000 7540 205000 3750 161000 2270 16200 181000 33200 9400 20000 9000 14800 7180 28000
2020-04-21 127000 908000 15200 43600 6410 6960 151000 7690 209000 3840 166000 2280 17000 184000 34100 9700 20400 9400 15300 7260 28300
2020-04-22 133000 927000 15300 45800 6480 7060 154000 7850 214000 3930 170000 2300 17800 187000 35100 10000 20700 9800 15800 7340 28600
2020-04-23 138000 946000 15400 48200 6560 7170 157000 8010 219000 4030 175000 2310 18800 190000 36100 10400 21000 10300 16400 7420 28900
2020-04-24 144000 965000 15600 50600 6650 7280 159000 8180 224000 4130 180000 2320 19700 194000 37200 10800 21300 10700 17000 7500 29200

Confirmed count forecast (bold red line in graphs) 2020-04-18 to 2020-04-24

DateAustraliaBrazilCanadaIranMalaysiaPhilippinesSouth AfricaUSUS-CAUS-COUS-CTUS-DCUS-FLUS-GAUS-ILUS-LAUS-MAUS-MIUS-NJUS-NYUS-WAWorld
2020-04-17 6522 33682 32813 79494 5251 5878 2783 699706 29398 9047 16809 2476 24745 16658 27575 23118 34402 29952 78467 229642 11445 3063712
2020-04-18 6570 36500 35300 80900 5330 6040 2890 730000 30600 9500 17500 2570 25500 17400 28600 23500 36100 30900 81000 237000 11600 3218000
2020-04-19 6610 39600 37900 82300 5420 6210 3010 762000 31900 10000 18300 2680 26400 18100 29900 23900 38000 31800 84000 245000 11800 3377000
2020-04-20 6660 42800 40700 83700 5500 6390 3140 797000 33200 10500 19200 2790 27400 18900 31300 24300 39900 32700 87000 253000 12000 3542000
2020-04-21 6700 46400 43800 85100 5590 6570 3280 835000 34700 11000 20100 2910 28400 19600 32600 24800 42000 33700 90000 260000 12200 3712000
2020-04-22 6740 50200 47100 86600 5680 6760 3420 875000 36200 11600 21000 3040 29400 20500 34000 25200 44200 34700 93000 269000 12400 3887000
2020-04-23 6780 54300 50700 88000 5760 6960 3570 918000 37800 12200 22000 3170 30500 21300 35400 25600 46400 35700 97000 277000 12600 4067000
2020-04-24 6820 58800 54600 89500 5850 7170 3720 964000 39600 12900 23100 3310 31600 22200 36900 26100 48900 36800 100000 286000 12800 4253000

Confirmed count scenario forecast (bold green line in graphs) 2020-04-18 to 2020-04-26

DateUKEUATBEBSCZDEDKESFIFRGRIEITNLPLPTROSENOCHAustraliaBrazilCanadaIranMalaysiaPhilippinesSouth AfricaUSUS-CAUS-COUS-CTUS-DCUS-FLUS-GAUS-ILUS-LAUS-MAUS-MIUS-NJUS-NYUS-WAWorld
2020-04-17 108692 830538 14595 36138 6088 6549 141397 7073 190839 3489 147969 2224 13980 172434 30449 8379 19022 8067 13216 6937 27078 6522 33682 32813 79494 5251 5878 2783 699706 29398 9047 16809 2476 24745 16658 27575 23118 34402 29952 78467 229642 11445 3063712
2020-04-18 111000 845000 14700 37200 6130 6560 143000 7190 194000 3530 153000 2250 14600 174000 30900 8550 19500 8270 13400 7000 27200 6590 34900 33700 81000 5390 6050 2830 719000 30400 9300 17400 2530 25300 16700 28300 23700 35300 31000 81000 236000 11500 3148000
2020-04-19 114000 861000 14800 38300 6180 6620 145000 7350 199000 3570 157000 2270 15000 177000 31400 8810 19900 8550 13700 7060 27400 6640 36700 34900 82400 5490 6190 2910 741000 31500 9500 18100 2610 25900 17100 29200 24400 36400 31900 84000 243000 11600 3235000
2020-04-20 116000 873000 14800 39200 6220 6670 147000 7490 203000 3620 160000 2290 15300 178000 31600 9010 20200 8760 13900 7110 27500 6680 37900 36100 83800 5580 6350 2960 760000 32600 9700 18700 2670 26600 17500 30000 25200 37000 32900 87000 248000 11700 3321000
2020-04-21 118000 884000 14900 40000 6270 6710 149000 7620 207000 3660 161000 2310 15600 179000 31900 9180 20500 8940 14300 7160 27700 6710 39000 37100 85200 5650 6460 3010 779000 33600 9900 19200 2740 27200 17800 30600 26100 37500 33800 90000 253000 11700 3402000
2020-04-22 120000 894000 15000 40600 6310 6770 150000 7760 210000 3700 162000 2330 15800 180000 32200 9390 20700 9100 14500 7190 27800 6750 40700 37900 86500 5710 6590 3050 797000 34600 10000 19600 2790 27700 18200 31300 26900 38000 34800 92000 258000 11800 3463000
2020-04-23 121000 901000 15000 41100 6350 6820 152000 7890 214000 3730 162000 2340 16000 181000 32600 9570 20900 9240 14700 7230 28000 6770 42000 38800 87800 5770 6720 3080 811000 35500 10200 20200 2840 28300 18400 31900 27600 38500 35600 95000 261000 11900 3521000
2020-04-24 122000 909000 15100 41700 6390 6870 153000 8020 217000 3760 162000 2360 16100 182000 32900 9690 21100 9360 14900 7260 28200 6790 42900 39800 89000 5820 6820 3100 824000 36200 10300 20600 2880 28800 18600 32300 28800 39000 36500 97000 265000 12000 3578000
2020-04-25 123000 917000 15100 42000 6440 6930 155000 8140 220000 3800 163000 2370 16300 183000 33100 9890 21300 9500 15200 7300 28400 6810 43700 40300 90100 5860 6910 3120 834000 36800 10400 20800 2920 29300 18800 32700 30100 39400 37300 99000 268000 12100 3650000
2020-04-26 124000 921000 15200 42400 6480 6980 156000 8250 222000 3860 163000 2370 16300 184000 33400 9960 21500 9610 15400 7320 28500 6820 44900 41200 91100 5910 6970 3130 845000 37400 10500 21000 2960 29700 19000 33100 31200 39700 38200 101000 271000 12200 3717000

Peak increase in estimated trend of Confirmed in Europe 2020-04-17

UKEUATBEBSCZDEDKESFIFRGRIEITNLPLPTROSENOCH
Peak date04-1003-2803-26 --03-2503-2803-2804-0403-2704-0604-1204-0204-1303-2104-1004-0704-10 --04-0803-2703-23
Peak daily increment 5915 29740 875 287 284 6006 334 8156 179 13468 98 1002 5703 1192 397 861 567 298 1205
Days from 100 to peak 36 34 18 11 15 27 25 25 24 42 22 30 27 35 23 28 32 21 18
Days from peak/2 to peak 22 18 13 11 14 15 25 14 24 26 25 24 17 28 21 23 29 19 12
Days since peak 7 20 22 23 20 20 13 21 11 5 15 4 27 7 10 7 9 21 25

Peak increase in estimated trend of Confirmed 2020-04-17

AustraliaBrazilCanadaIranMalaysiaPhilippinesSouth AfricaUSUS-CAUS-COUS-CTUS-DCUS-FLUS-GAUS-ILUS-LAUS-MAUS-MIUS-NJUS-NYUS-WAWorld
Peak date03-28 -- --03-3104-0203-3103-2604-1004-04 --04-0904-0804-0304-0704-1204-0404-1204-0304-0404-0904-02 --
Peak daily increment 411 3106 181 361 190 32164 1326 955 142 1194 963 1448 1763 2047 1676 3840 9752 533
Days from 100 to peak 18 35 24 17 8 38 27 21 17 19 22 27 19 31 16 20 32 26
Days from peak/2 to peak 14 28 25 13 8 21 18 16 19 13 17 22 13 19 12 13 20 22
Days since peak 20 17 15 17 22 7 13 8 9 14 10 5 13 5 14 13 8 15

Initial visual evaluation of forecasts of Confirmed