COVID-19 short-term forecasts Deaths 2021-08-17


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 2021-08-17

UKEUATBEBGBSCZDEDKESFIFRGRHRHUIEITNLPLPTROSESISKNOCH
Peak date (mm-dd)2021-01-1911-2612-1711-032021-04-0712-282021-03-092021-01-132021-01-1511-0412-2111-162021-05-032021-04-282021-03-312021-01-1912-012021-01-082021-04-132021-01-282021-06-082021-01-2012-042021-04-072021-04-2111-16
Peak daily increment 1259 3528 112 202 124 55 215 857 38 927 6 601 82 44 253 56 724 99 540 279 173 139 52 105 11 96
Days since peak 210 264 243 287 132 232 161 216 214 286 239 274 106 111 139 210 259 221 126 201 70 209 256 132 118 274
Last total 131149 746603 10757 25299 18395 6565 30376 91927 2562 82739 1006 111589 13220 8288 30042 5059 128510 17920 75306 17584 34359 14659 4433 12546 810 10930
Last daily increment 170 393 0 0 19 6 1 22 2 144 3 83 16 3 1 0 54 5 7 11 6 1 0 2 1 2
Last week 542 1514 5 17 89 24 5 86 8 419 11 341 114 13 5 0 206 33 17 70 28 1 0 2 3 14
Previous peak date04-1004-0404-0604-1512-02 --11-0404-1504-0403-3104-2104-0511-2912-1912-1104-2403-2904-0411-2704-1511-2704-21 -- -- --04-06
Previous peak daily increment 964 3092 20 328 142 207 226 15 957 30 933 101 76 164 167 781 153 492 31 164 101 60
Low between peaks 8 -751 0 -106 35 97 3 0 -1351 0 7 23 10 80 0 6 -6 204 3 50 1 -54

Peak increase in estimated trend of Deaths 2021-08-17

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)09-032021-04-062021-01-162021-03-292021-06-252021-06-102021-07-31 --2021-06-012021-04-112021-04-09 --2021-07-202021-04-272021-01-152021-04-152021-02-0212-142021-01-152021-02-2412-092021-01-112021-02-032021-07-302021-01-212021-01-252021-01-262021-04-0312-1012-1012-162021-07-222021-06-0111-1608-202021-05-272021-03-0912-072021-03-092021-08-10 --2021-04-092021-08-0912-0912-0305-2906-252021-05-262021-01-132021-01-1412-162021-04-072021-04-062021-01-132021-02-012021-08-042021-06-112021-01-192021-06-252021-03-032021-01-0212-292021-07-282021-03-122021-01-07
Peak daily increment 35 2996 147 118 654 6246 1712 3098 813 223 391 354 3330 14 134 43 154 612 151 38 5 118 178 138 48 54 18 148 100 9 231 155 106 480 8 126 114 70 14 14 27 25 25 1566 94 41 191 194 1325 20 211 94 4 18 336 9 326 2 80 72 128 10
Days since peak 348 133 213 141 53 68 17 77 128 130 28 112 214 124 196 246 214 174 251 218 195 18 208 204 203 136 250 250 244 26 77 274 362 82 161 253 161 7 130 8 251 257 445 418 83 216 215 244 132 133 216 197 13 67 210 53 167 227 231 20 158 222
Last total 970 570598 26678 36438 123688 432519 120013 99108 249529 197539 30462 169169 77993 53507 623322 408 11832 6539 18467 64744 7047 8303 1151 1840 36973 21337 549 6210 2258 23641 13743 5400 7459 11706 18142 9869 907 21130 7737 9945 7880 1743 13895 1548 2230 1395 26715 4455 6223 53846 20643 7594 2964 27993 10115 2057 12814 54478 1725 11625 264 6266 8336 2990 809
Last daily increment 3 1106 13 18 108 440 1180 625 877 146 96 785 553 183 1001 5 33 41 3 50 6 -3 1 2 0 44 0 0 7 16 29 0 8 122 7 6 3 0 3 113 67 7 15 3 0 1 19 4 33 32 34 0 15 27 7 2 31 99 0 7 0 21 12 12 16
Last week 23 4850 37 281 735 2850 7815 3461 3326 393 1088 4756 2219 942 4809 8 143 173 61 251 34 7 2 4 0 160 7 0 22 89 63 38 51 298 33 27 6 52 22 159 170 17 105 5 0 3 50 18 127 326 34 0 44 68 108 4 121 539 16 44 1 65 22 18 16
Previous peak date --07-2104-2907-172021-01-2206-162021-01-2711-1810-0507-1809-14 --2021-01-1412-2604-132021-01-2009-1609-1507-2108-0604-2404-2004-2904-2708-0711-0310-2112-1109-0905-1205-022021-01-132021-03-1804-1404-2504-292021-01-0804-1412-112021-05-182021-01-142021-02-032021-02-02 --05-20 --04-2212-1608-1305-1804-232021-01-2912-1505-0507-2812-032021-02-0507-2712-1004-2204-0904-0112-082021-01-1309-02
Previous peak daily increment 1065 186 785 389 1662 310 479 1724 918 159 566 253 2233 13 99 124 78 139 72 105 11 13 175 354 6 313 19 112 99 209 353 64 459 56 21 137 63 71 45 27 96 40 317 31 18 3552 43 40 23 135 45 23 113 461 9 104 11 60 60 26 27
Low between peaks 371 3 37 96 92 131 175 95 16 43 63 528 0 9 10 6 41 2 1 0 -1 45 32 0 6 3 15 8 1 7 10 -1 5 1 6 8 1 1 5 1 52 -85 5 7 12 1 2 12 14 0 5 70 1 9 0 6 -50 4 0

Deaths count forecast Europe (bold red line in graphs) 2021-08-18 to 2021-08-24

DateUKEUBGBSDEESFRGRITNLPTRO
2021-08-17 131149 746603 18395 6565 91927 82739 111589 13220 128510 17920 17584 34359
2021-08-18 131200 746700 18410 6568 91950 82780 111600 13240 128500 17930 17600 34360
2021-08-19 131300 746800 18420 6568 91960 82840 111600 13260 128500 17930 17610 34360
2021-08-20 131400 747000 18430 6568 91970 82890 111700 13280 128500 17940 17620 34360
2021-08-21 131500 747100 18440 6568 91970 82890 111700 13300 128600 17940 17640 34370
2021-08-22 131500 747200 18440 6569 91980 82890 111700 13320 128600 17940 17650 34370
2021-08-23 131500 747500 18460 6571 92000 83010 111800 13330 128600 17950 17660 34370
2021-08-24 131700 747800 18470 6574 92020 83130 111800 13350 128600 17950 17670 34380

Deaths count forecast (bold red line in graphs) 2021-08-18 to 2021-08-24

DateAustraliaBrazilCanadaChileColombiaIndiaIndonesiaIranMexicoPeruPhilippinesRussiaSouth AfricaTurkeyUSUS-ALUS-ARUS-AZUS-CAUS-COUS-GAUS-IDUS-ILUS-INUS-KSUS-KYUS-LAUS-MAUS-MDUS-MIUS-MNUS-MOUS-MSUS-NCUS-NJUS-NVUS-NYUS-OHUS-ORUS-PAUS-SCUS-TNUS-TXUS-VAUS-WAUS-WI
2021-08-17 970 570598 26678 36438 123688 432519 120013 99108 249529 197539 30462 169169 77993 53507 623322 11832 6539 18467 64744 7047 21337 2258 23641 13743 5400 7459 11706 18142 9869 21130 7737 9945 7880 13895 26715 6223 53846 20643 2964 27993 10115 12814 54478 11625 6266 8336
2021-08-18 972 571300 26690 36530 123800 433100 122400 99700 249800 197600 30500 169900 78290 53670 623300 11830 6562 18490 64770 7050 21340 2260 23640 13750 5413 7459 11710 18150 9870 21130 7741 9950 7902 13900 26720 6225 53860 20660 2964 28010 10120 12810 54630 11630 6266 8343
2021-08-19 972 572300 26700 36670 124000 433600 124200 100200 250200 197700 30590 170600 78730 53830 623400 11830 6562 18500 64830 7059 21350 2260 23650 13750 5413 7459 11710 18150 9874 21130 7744 9950 7933 13910 26720 6237 53880 20680 2966 28030 10120 12820 54740 11630 6271 8349
2021-08-20 972 573000 26710 36730 124100 434200 125800 100500 250600 197800 30800 171300 79080 53990 624600 11850 6564 18530 64890 7068 21370 2264 23660 13750 5432 7467 11730 18150 9878 21150 7748 9960 7975 13920 26720 6263 53890 20690 2970 28050 10120 12840 54870 11630 6286 8355
2021-08-21 972 573800 26710 36790 124200 434700 127200 100700 251200 197800 30970 172000 79310 54150 624800 11860 6576 18560 64910 7068 21380 2264 23660 13750 5432 7467 11740 18160 9885 21150 7750 9980 8009 13920 26730 6263 53910 20710 2970 28060 10120 12840 54950 11640 6286 8361
2021-08-22 972 573900 26710 36850 124300 435200 128400 101000 251200 197900 31180 172700 79540 54300 624900 11870 6590 18560 64930 7068 21380 2264 23660 13750 5432 7467 11740 18160 9887 21150 7750 9980 8028 13920 26740 6263 53920 20730 2970 28060 10120 12840 55010 11640 6286 8365
2021-08-23 974 574100 26720 36900 124400 435600 129500 101200 251500 198000 31210 173400 79780 54450 625500 11870 6607 18560 64970 7080 21400 2268 23680 13760 5437 7489 11780 18170 9889 21160 7752 9980 8083 13960 26740 6279 53940 20750 2979 28070 10120 12860 55060 11650 6292 8374
2021-08-24 976 575200 26730 36930 124500 436100 130800 101500 252300 198000 31270 174100 80230 54600 626200 11900 6626 18560 65000 7086 21440 2273 23690 13780 5437 7496 11870 18170 9897 21170 7756 10080 8130 13970 26750 6309 53960 20760 2991 28090 10120 12890 55150 11660 6307 8378

Deaths count average forecast Europe (bold black line in graphs) 2021-08-18 to 2021-08-24

DateUKEUBGBSDEESFRGRITNLPTRO
2021-08-17 131149 746603 18395 6565 91927 82739 111589 13220 128510 17920 17584 34359
2021-08-18 131200 746900 18410 6569 91950 82840 111600 13240 128500 17930 17600 34360
2021-08-19 131300 747200 18420 6572 91960 82900 111700 13260 128600 17940 17610 34360
2021-08-20 131400 747400 18430 6574 91980 82960 111800 13280 128600 17940 17620 34370
2021-08-21 131500 747600 18440 6577 91980 82990 111800 13290 128600 17950 17640 34370
2021-08-22 131600 747800 18450 6580 91990 83020 111800 13310 128600 17950 17650 34370
2021-08-23 131600 748000 18460 6582 92010 83110 111900 13330 128700 17950 17660 34370
2021-08-24 131700 748200 18470 6585 92020 83190 111900 13350 128700 17960 17670 34370

Deaths count average forecast (bold black line in graphs) 2021-08-18 to 2021-08-24

DateAustraliaBrazilCanadaChileColombiaIndiaIndonesiaIranMexicoPeruPhilippinesRussiaSouth AfricaTurkeyUSUS-ALUS-ARUS-AZUS-CAUS-COUS-GAUS-IDUS-ILUS-INUS-KSUS-KYUS-LAUS-MAUS-MDUS-MIUS-MNUS-MOUS-MSUS-NCUS-NJUS-NVUS-NYUS-OHUS-ORUS-PAUS-SCUS-TNUS-TXUS-VAUS-WAUS-WI
2021-08-17 970 570598 26678 36438 123688 432519 120013 99108 249529 197539 30462 169169 77993 53507 623322 11832 6539 18467 64744 7047 21337 2258 23641 13743 5400 7459 11706 18142 9869 21130 7737 9945 7880 13895 26715 6223 53846 20643 2964 27993 10115 12814 54478 11625 6266 8336
2021-08-18 972 571400 26690 36470 123800 433000 121400 99600 250200 197600 30580 169900 78450 53670 623700 11850 6563 18470 64770 7051 21360 2263 23650 13760 5411 7469 11770 18150 9873 21140 7744 9970 7912 13920 26720 6243 53890 20660 2972 28010 10130 12830 54570 11630 6277 8342
2021-08-19 974 572300 26700 36550 124000 433400 122900 99900 250700 197700 30740 170600 78820 53810 623900 11860 6576 18480 64790 7059 21380 2264 23670 13770 5416 7472 11790 18150 9877 21140 7748 9990 7926 13930 26720 6261 53930 20660 2977 28020 10140 12840 54660 11630 6282 8344
2021-08-20 975 573200 26700 36600 124100 433900 124300 100100 251200 197700 30930 171400 79150 53950 624700 11880 6590 18500 64830 7067 21410 2268 23680 13770 5431 7480 11830 18150 9881 21150 7753 10000 7950 13940 26730 6288 53970 20670 2981 28030 10150 12860 54760 11640 6294 8346
2021-08-21 976 574000 26710 36640 124200 434300 125700 100300 251900 197800 31100 172100 79420 54090 624800 11890 6606 18520 64830 7069 21420 2268 23680 13780 5434 7483 11850 18160 9887 21150 7754 10020 7961 13950 26730 6294 54000 20670 2985 28030 10160 12870 54810 11640 6294 8347
2021-08-22 978 574300 26710 36680 124400 434800 127000 100500 251900 197900 31300 172800 79700 54230 624900 11910 6621 18530 64840 7071 21420 2269 23680 13780 5437 7486 11870 18160 9889 21160 7754 10020 7967 13950 26730 6300 54040 20670 2988 28040 10170 12880 54850 11650 6294 8348
2021-08-23 980 574800 26720 36730 124500 435200 128300 100800 252200 197900 31410 173500 79970 54380 625100 11910 6637 18530 64870 7080 21440 2272 23700 13780 5442 7496 11900 18170 9892 21160 7755 10040 7987 13970 26730 6311 54080 20680 2994 28040 10180 12890 54890 11650 6296 8351
2021-08-24 982 575800 26720 36770 124600 435600 130100 101000 252800 198000 31530 174200 80280 54520 625300 11920 6654 18550 64890 7087 21460 2274 23710 13800 5445 7502 11940 18170 9897 21170 7758 10080 8009 13980 26740 6334 54110 20680 3001 28040 10190 12910 54960 11660 6300 8353

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