COVID-19 short-term forecasts Deaths 2021-07-16


General information

  • 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. 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.
  • A list of notes is below. The most recent note:
    [2021-04-29]The `legacy' download for areas of England is stuck at April 26, so we switched to the newer downloads. The results now include Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. The map, however, only shows England.

Peak increase in estimated trend of Deaths in Europe 2021-07-16

UKEUATBEBGBSCZDEDKESFIFRGRHRHUIEITNLPLPTROSESISKNOCH
Peak date (mm-dd)2021-01-1911-2612-1711-042021-04-0712-282021-03-092021-01-132021-01-1511-0412-2111-172021-05-032021-04-282021-04-022021-01-1912-012021-01-082021-04-132021-01-282021-06-082021-01-2012-042021-04-072021-04-2111-16
Peak daily increment 1258 3529 112 208 124 55 215 857 38 931 6 596 82 44 254 56 723 99 540 279 173 140 52 105 11 96
Days since peak 178 232 211 254 100 200 129 184 182 254 207 241 74 79 105 178 227 189 94 169 38 177 224 100 86 242
Last total 128642 740696 10728 25209 18169 6495 30335 91367 2541 81096 978 110486 12809 8234 30015 5018 127851 17775 75205 17194 34250 14646 4425 12524 796 10902
Last daily increment 49 125 1 1 6 1 0 21 1 12 0 22 14 1 2 0 11 2 14 7 5 3 0 0 0 39
Last week 243 704 5 11 29 8 4 128 2 93 2 107 46 7 11 12 83 10 46 46 34 3 2 5 0 4
Previous peak date04-1004-0404-0604-1512-02 --11-0404-1504-0403-3104-2104-0711-2912-1912-1104-2403-2904-0411-2704-1511-2704-21 -- -- --04-06
Previous peak daily increment 964 3090 20 322 142 207 226 15 945 30 933 101 76 164 167 781 153 492 31 164 101 60
Low between peaks 7 -745 0 -105 35 97 3 0 -1283 0 7 23 10 80 0 6 -6 204 3 50 1 -50

Peak increase in estimated trend of Deaths 2021-07-16

AustraliaBrazilCanadaChileColombiaIndiaIndonesiaIranMexicoPeruPhilippinesRussiaSouth AfricaTurkeyUSUS-AKUS-ALUS-ARUS-AZUS-CAUS-COUS-CTUS-DCUS-DEUS-FLUS-GAUS-HIUS-IAUS-IDUS-ILUS-INUS-KSUS-KYUS-LAUS-MAUS-MDUS-MEUS-MIUS-MNUS-MOUS-MSUS-MTUS-NCUS-NDUS-NEUS-NHUS-NJUS-NMUS-NVUS-NYUS-OHUS-OKUS-ORUS-PAUS-SCUS-SDUS-TNUS-TXUS-UTUS-VAUS-VTUS-WAUS-WIUS-WVUS-WY
Peak date (mm-dd)09-032021-04-062021-01-162021-03-292021-07-122021-06-10 --2021-04-252021-06-012021-04-142021-04-09 --2021-01-142021-04-272021-01-152021-04-152021-02-0212-142021-01-152021-02-2412-092021-01-112021-02-0312-222021-01-212021-01-252021-01-262021-04-0312-1012-1012-162021-03-242021-06-0111-1608-202021-05-272021-03-0912-072021-03-092021-05-182021-01-142021-04-092021-02-0212-0912-0305-2906-252021-05-262021-01-132021-01-1612-162021-04-072021-04-062021-01-132021-02-0112-032021-06-112021-01-192021-06-252021-03-0312-2712-292021-06-042021-03-122021-01-07
Peak daily increment 35 2995 147 116 1407 6187 419 2955 814 223 564 354 3330 14 134 43 154 655 151 38 5 9 178 137 47 55 18 148 99 8 237 147 106 482 8 126 114 70 46 14 96 27 25 26 1568 93 42 192 194 1341 20 211 93 23 18 337 9 326 2 82 15 129 9
Days since peak 316 101 181 109 4 36 82 45 93 98 183 80 182 92 164 214 182 142 219 186 163 206 176 172 171 104 218 218 212 114 45 242 330 50 129 221 129 59 183 98 164 219 225 413 386 51 184 181 212 100 101 184 165 225 35 178 21 135 201 199 42 126 190
Last total 913 540398 26450 34309 115333 412531 71397 86791 236015 194935 26476 144446 66385 50450 608815 381 11442 5992 18100 64086 6876 8281 1146 1697 36973 20856 520 6158 2173 23357 13514 5192 7284 10828 18008 9761 878 20936 7635 9280 7465 1691 13523 1536 2230 1380 26531 4379 5758 53497 20434 7417 2817 27786 9862 2041 12443 52792 1646 11477 258 6039 8209 2919 760
Last daily increment 1 1456 14 102 500 0 1205 199 275 90 162 789 413 35 417 0 3 11 17 43 4 0 1 1 0 11 1 0 4 7 1 -5 3 7 3 4 1 17 3 5 5 5 4 0 0 0 2 7 6 1 26 0 7 4 -3 0 0 29 2 6 0 7 11 2 0
Last week 2 7505 61 542 3602 4491 5940 1097 1108 1705 660 4550 2247 258 1683 2 40 44 71 154 28 3 3 2 0 70 2 9 8 60 27 16 29 47 9 15 16 49 13 79 26 18 40 4 0 6 30 25 38 23 57 11 25 43 16 2 30 168 12 27 0 45 27 11 9
Previous peak date --07-2104-2907-172021-05-0306-162021-01-2711-1810-0507-1809-14 --07-2212-2604-122021-01-2009-1609-1507-2108-0604-2404-2004-2904-2908-0711-0310-2112-1109-0905-1205-022021-01-132021-03-1804-1404-2504-292021-01-0804-1412-1112-1508-262021-02-03 -- --05-20 --04-2212-1608-1305-1804-232021-01-2912-1505-0507-2407-292021-02-0507-2712-1004-2204-0904-0112-082021-01-1309-02
Previous peak daily increment 1066 186 787 537 1662 322 473 1833 917 159 323 253 2243 13 100 124 78 139 72 106 11 13 175 358 6 310 20 112 99 201 350 64 459 56 21 137 63 61 31 27 41 321 31 18 3562 43 40 23 135 45 2 113 459 9 105 12 59 60 26 27
Low between peaks 371 3 37 81 92 71 171 95 16 58 63 529 0 9 10 6 42 2 1 0 0 45 32 0 6 3 15 8 1 8 10 -2 5 1 6 8 -2 11 1 1 51 -84 5 6 12 -7 2 12 14 1 5 70 0 9 0 5 5 4 0

Deaths count forecast Europe (bold red line in graphs) 2021-07-17 to 2021-07-23

DateUKEUBGDEESFRGRITPLPTRO
2021-07-16 128642 740696 18169 91367 81096 110486 12809 127851 75205 17194 34250
2021-07-17 128700 741200 18190 91430 81110 110500 12820 127900 75240 17200 34260
2021-07-18 128700 741500 18190 91460 81120 110500 12830 127900 75250 17210 34390
2021-07-19 128700 741700 18210 91500 81150 110600 12830 127900 75250 17220 34460
2021-07-20 128800 742000 18220 91540 81170 110600 12840 128000 75270 17230 34500
2021-07-21 128800 742100 18220 91580 81200 110600 12850 128000 75280 17230 34530
2021-07-22 128900 742200 18230 91600 81240 110600 12860 128000 75290 17240 34550
2021-07-23 128900 742400 18240 91630 81260 110700 12860 128000 75310 17250 34560

Deaths count forecast (bold red line in graphs) 2021-07-17 to 2021-07-23

DateBrazilCanadaChileColombiaIndiaIndonesiaIranMexicoPeruPhilippinesRussiaSouth AfricaTurkeyUSUS-ALUS-ARUS-AZUS-CAUS-COUS-GAUS-ILUS-INUS-KYUS-LAUS-MIUS-MOUS-MSUS-NCUS-NJUS-NMUS-NVUS-NYUS-OHUS-ORUS-PAUS-TNUS-TXUS-VAUS-WAUS-WI
2021-07-16 540398 26450 34309 115333 412531 71397 86791 236015 194935 26476 144446 66385 50450 608815 11442 5992 18100 64086 6876 20856 23357 13514 7284 10828 20936 9280 7465 13523 26531 4379 5758 53497 20434 2817 27786 12443 52792 11477 6039 8209
2021-07-17 542500 26470 34500 115700 413200 72750 86960 236200 195200 26580 145300 66390 50490 608900 11440 5992 18110 64130 6885 20860 23360 13520 7284 10830 20940 9280 7465 13520 26540 4379 5758 53500 20430 2817 27790 12450 52810 11480 6041 8214
2021-07-18 543500 26480 34620 116100 414700 73960 87080 236300 195400 26670 146100 66390 50550 609000 11440 5992 18110 64140 6890 20860 23360 13520 7285 10830 20940 9280 7465 13520 26550 4379 5758 53510 20430 2817 27800 12450 52820 11490 6041 8216
2021-07-19 544200 26500 34730 116500 415800 75100 87230 236400 195600 26770 147000 66390 50600 609100 11440 5994 18110 64160 6890 20870 23380 13530 7295 10830 20950 9280 7467 13530 26550 4380 5762 53520 20430 2818 27800 12460 52840 11490 6045 8223
2021-07-20 545900 26510 34760 116900 416800 76160 87370 236600 195700 26870 147800 66740 50650 609500 11440 6006 18120 64190 6897 20890 23390 13540 7305 10840 20970 9298 7476 13540 26560 4382 5764 53530 20430 2821 27810 12460 52870 11500 6063 8228
2021-07-21 547500 26530 34800 117300 417700 77280 87520 236900 195900 26970 148600 66920 50690 609800 11460 6012 18140 64210 6905 20900 23400 13550 7312 10850 20970 9321 7481 13550 26570 4384 5768 53540 20430 2825 27820 12470 52900 11510 6073 8235
2021-07-22 548900 26540 34920 117600 418500 78350 87670 237200 196000 27070 149400 67160 50730 610100 11470 6018 18140 64260 6910 20920 23400 13550 7318 10860 20980 9329 7484 13560 26580 4392 5779 53550 20430 2831 27830 12480 52940 11510 6084 8238
2021-07-23 550300 26550 35040 118000 419200 79480 87830 237400 196100 27170 150200 67520 50770 610500 11470 6027 18160 64300 6915 20930 23410 13550 7323 10870 20990 9335 7488 13560 26580 4397 5785 53550 20430 2836 27840 12480 52970 11520 6088 8250

Deaths count average forecast Europe (bold black line in graphs) 2021-07-17 to 2021-07-23

DateUKEUBGDEESFRGRITPLPTRO
2021-07-16 128642 740696 18169 91367 81096 110486 12809 127851 75205 17194 34250
2021-07-17 128700 740900 18170 91370 81110 110500 12820 127900 75210 17200 34300
2021-07-18 128700 741000 18180 91390 81110 110500 12820 127900 75220 17210 34390
2021-07-19 128700 741200 18180 91410 81130 110600 12830 127900 75220 17220 34460
2021-07-20 128800 741400 18190 91440 81150 110600 12830 127900 75230 17220 34510
2021-07-21 128800 741500 18190 91470 81170 110600 12840 127900 75240 17230 34550
2021-07-22 128800 741700 18200 91490 81200 110600 12840 127900 75250 17240 34590
2021-07-23 128900 741900 18200 91520 81220 110600 12850 128000 75260 17240 34620

Deaths count average forecast (bold black line in graphs) 2021-07-17 to 2021-07-23

DateBrazilCanadaChileColombiaIndiaIndonesiaIranMexicoPeruPhilippinesRussiaSouth AfricaTurkeyUSUS-ALUS-ARUS-AZUS-CAUS-COUS-GAUS-ILUS-INUS-KYUS-LAUS-MIUS-MOUS-MSUS-NCUS-NJUS-NMUS-NVUS-NYUS-OHUS-ORUS-PAUS-TNUS-TXUS-VAUS-WAUS-WI
2021-07-16 540398 26450 34309 115333 412531 71397 86791 236015 194935 26476 144446 66385 50450 608815 11442 5992 18100 64086 6876 20856 23357 13514 7284 10828 20936 9280 7465 13523 26531 4379 5758 53497 20434 2817 27786 12443 52792 11477 6039 8209
2021-07-17 541700 26460 34420 115800 413000 72380 86920 236200 195100 26600 145200 66720 50490 608900 11450 5996 18110 64120 6883 20860 23360 13510 7286 10830 20940 9285 7466 13520 26540 4382 5760 53500 20440 2820 27790 12450 52810 11480 6041 8210
2021-07-18 542300 26460 34510 116100 413900 73230 87000 236300 195200 26700 145900 66990 50530 608900 11450 5996 18120 64130 6887 20870 23360 13510 7289 10830 20940 9292 7467 13520 26540 4383 5761 53510 20450 2821 27800 12450 52810 11490 6042 8210
2021-07-19 543000 26470 34600 116600 414600 74000 87070 236400 195400 26800 146600 67270 50580 609000 11450 5999 18120 64150 6889 20870 23380 13520 7296 10840 20950 9299 7469 13540 26540 4385 5765 53510 20450 2823 27800 12460 52830 11490 6045 8213
2021-07-20 544400 26480 34640 117000 415400 74810 87140 236600 195500 26900 147300 67720 50620 609300 11450 6004 18130 64170 6895 20890 23390 13530 7303 10840 20970 9312 7477 13540 26540 4386 5768 53520 20460 2826 27810 12460 52850 11490 6054 8215
2021-07-21 545800 26500 34690 117400 416100 75620 87220 236900 195700 27000 147900 68050 50660 609400 11460 6007 18140 64200 6902 20900 23390 13540 7308 10850 20970 9330 7482 13550 26550 4388 5772 53520 20460 2829 27820 12470 52870 11500 6059 8218
2021-07-22 547200 26510 34780 117800 416800 76380 87290 237100 195800 27100 148600 68320 50700 609600 11460 6010 18150 64240 6906 20910 23400 13540 7312 10850 20970 9340 7484 13550 26550 4391 5778 53530 20470 2832 27820 12470 52900 11500 6066 8220
2021-07-23 548500 26520 34880 118200 417500 77210 87370 237300 196000 27210 149300 68660 50740 609800 11470 6013 18150 64290 6912 20920 23410 13550 7317 10860 20980 9349 7487 13560 26560 4393 5785 53530 20470 2835 27830 12470 52920 11500 6070 8228

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. Also available as Nuffield Economics Discussion Paper 2020-W06. Still preliminary is the documentation of the medium term forecasts.

Recent changes and notes

[2021-04-29]The `legacy' download for areas of England is stuck at April 26, so we switched to the newer downloads. The results now include Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. The map, however, only shows England.
[2021-01-07]Slideshow of forecasts, errors, and actuals 2020-06-30 to 2021-01-02: how England lost the battle.
[2020-10-27]Statistical short-term forecasting of the COVID-19 Pandemic (Jurgen Doornik, Jennie Castle, and David Hendry) is now published at the Journal of Clinical Immunology and Immunotherapy. open access
[2020-10-11]Short-term forecasting of the coronavirus pandemic (Jurgen Doornik, Jennie Castle, and David Hendry) is now in press at the International Journal of Forecasting. open access
[2020-10-10]Removed forecasts from the Chinese scenarios, while investigating possibility to use own history from the first wave.
Added information on the previous peak (if present) to the peak tables.
Local forecasts for England: now dropping last four observations.
[2020-07-01] Modified the short-term model to allow for (slowly changing) seasonality. Many countries show clear seasonality after the initial period, likely caused by institutional factors regarding data collection. This seasonality was also getting in the way of peak detection. As a consequence estimates of the peak date may have changed for countries with strong seasonality.
Added forecasts of cumulative confirmed cases for lower tier local authorities of England. The data is available from 2020-07-02 including all tests (pillar one and two). Only authorities with more than 5 cases in the previous week are included.
[2020-06-29] Tables in April included the world, but not the world as we know it (double counting China and the US). So removed the world from those old tables.
Why short-term forecasts can be better than models for predicting how pandemics evolve just appeared at The Conversation.
Thursday 2 July webinar at the FGV EESP - São Paolo School of Economics. This starts at 16:00 UK time (UTC+01:00) and streamed here.
[2020-06-24] Research presentation on short-term COVID-19 forecasting on 26 June (14:00 UK time) at the Quarterly Forecasting Forum of the IIF UK Chapter.
[2020-06-06] Removed Brazil from yesterday's forecasts (only; last observation 2020-06-05).
[2020-06-04] Data issues with confirmed cases for France.
Added an appendix to the short term paper with further forecast comparisons for European and Latin American countries.
Both Sweden and Iran have lost their peak in confirmed cases. For Sweden the previous peak was on 24 April (daily peak of 656 cases), for Iran it was on 31 March (peak of 3116). For Iran this looks like a second wave, with increasing daily counts for the last four weeks. For Sweden this is a sudden jump in confirmed cases in the last two days, compared to a fairly steady weekly pattern over the previous six weeks.
[2020-05-20] Problem with UK confirmed cases: negative daily count. This makes the forecasts temporarily unreliable.
Updated the second paper.
[2020-05-18] Minor fixes to the improved version of scenario forecasting, backported to 2020-05-13.
[2020-05-13] We now omit countries with fewer than 200 confirmed cases in the last week (25 for deaths).
The short-term paper has some small updates, including further comparisons with other models.
Data for Ecuador are not reliable enough for forecasting.
Switched to an improved version of scenario forecasting.
[2020-05-06] The New York Times is in the process of redefining its US state data. Unfortunately, at the moment only the last observation has changed (e.g New York deaths jumped from 19645 on 2020-05-05 to 25956 a day later). This means the data is currently useless; however it does bring it close to the Johns Hopkins/CSSE count (25626 on 2020-05-06). The aggregate US count is based on JH/CSSE so unaffected. We now use Johns Hopkins/CSSE US state data, including all states with sufficient counts. So the new forecasts cannot be compared to those previously.
A minor change is that we show the graph without scenario forecast if no peak has been detected yet.
[2020-04-29] See our blog entry at the International Institute of Forecasters.
US history of death counts revised in Johns Hopkins/CSSE data.
UK death counts have been revised to include the deaths in care homes. In the Johns Hopkins/CSSE data set, which we use, the entire history has been revised. So forecasts made up to 2020-04-29 cannot be compared to later outcomes. In the ECDC data set only the last observation has changed, causing a jump in the series.
[2020-04-27] Our short-term COVID-19 forecasting paper is now available as Nuffield Economics Discussion Paper 2020-W06.
A small adjustment has been made to the scenario forecast methodology, and will be documented shortly.
[2020-04-24] A summary of our work on short-term COVID-19 forecasting appeared as a voxeu.
[2020-04-17] Bird and Nielsen look into nowcasting death counts in England.
[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).
[2020-04-10] Updated documentation with better description of short-term estimates and peak determination.
[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.
[2020-04-08] Minor correction to peak estimates. Added table with scenario forecasts.
[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.
[2020-04-02] Now including more US States, based on New York Times data.
[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).
[2020-03-26] Scenario forecasts that are based on what happened in China earlier this year, only for Italy.
[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.

Initial visual evaluation of forecasts of Deaths