COVID-19 short-term forecasts Deaths 2021-01-25 Latin American Countries


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:
    [2021-01-07]Slideshow of forecasts, errors, and actuals 2020-06-30 to 2021-01-02: how England lost the battle.

Peak increase in estimated trend of Deaths in Latin America 2021-01-25

ArgentinaBelizeBoliviaBrazilChileColombiaCosta RicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEl SalvadorGuatemalaHaitiHondurasJamaicaMexicoPanamaParaguayPeruUruguayVenezuela
Peak date (mm-dd)2021-01-1812-0309-072021-01-2007-17 --09-2809-0309-072021-01-0311-1807-1212-2909-2910-052021-01-1109-2607-23 --2021-01-11
Peak daily increment 280 6 1439 1068 787 18 22 3440 26 31 3 19 4 1833 45 20 2944 8
Days since peak 7 53 140 5 192 119 144 140 22 68 197 27 118 112 14 121 186 14
Last total 47034 293 10051 217664 17999 51747 2558 2545 14639 1572 5469 243 3462 338 150273 5098 2632 39608 390 1154
Last daily increment 207 3 66 627 66 373 40 14 16 11 4 0 15 2 659 35 15 0 14 6
Last week 968 10 329 6173 426 2345 81 84 257 63 156 3 71 9 7441 234 97 838 60 38
Previous peak date10-01 -- --07-21 --08-23 --04-1205-1008-0706-05 --07-30 -- --07-23 -- -- --09-20
Previous peak daily increment 2487 1066 318 23 166 11 43 35 28 9
Low between peaks 118 371 4 14 3 12 5 10 3

Deaths count forecast Latin America (bold red line in graphs) 2021-01-26 to 2021-02-01

DateArgentinaBoliviaBrazilChileColombiaCosta RicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEl SalvadorGuatemalaHondurasMexicoPanamaParaguayPeruUruguayVenezuela
2021-01-25 47034 10051 217664 17999 51747 2558 2545 14639 1572 5469 3462 150273 5098 2632 39608 390 1154
2021-01-26 47320 10090 218500 18010 52100 2579 2557 14680 1581 5494 3474 150800 5140 2647 39670 398 1160
2021-01-27 47520 10130 219800 18040 52450 2593 2569 14720 1591 5521 3486 152300 5181 2661 39740 407 1165
2021-01-28 47700 10170 221000 18150 52800 2607 2582 14750 1600 5546 3498 153800 5220 2675 39830 415 1171
2021-01-29 47920 10210 222000 18230 53140 2620 2593 14790 1609 5572 3509 154900 5260 2689 39900 424 1176
2021-01-30 48120 10250 223000 18290 53480 2621 2605 14830 1618 5598 3521 156100 5300 2704 39970 432 1182
2021-01-31 48250 10290 223500 18360 53830 2621 2617 14870 1627 5625 3532 156600 5340 2718 40050 441 1187
2021-02-01 48420 10330 224000 18420 54170 2658 2629 14910 1636 5651 3544 157100 5380 2732 40130 450 1192

Deaths count average forecast Latin America (bold black line in graphs) 2021-01-26 to 2021-02-01

DateArgentinaBoliviaBrazilChileColombiaCosta RicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEl SalvadorGuatemalaHondurasMexicoPanamaParaguayPeruUruguayVenezuela
2021-01-25 47034 10051 217664 17999 51747 2558 2545 14639 1572 5469 3462 150273 5098 2632 39608 390 1154
2021-01-26 47220 10100 218700 18050 52120 2571 2558 14670 1582 5489 3473 151600 5136 2647 39690 400 1160
2021-01-27 47390 10150 219900 18090 52480 2587 2568 14710 1592 5518 3485 153000 5177 2662 39780 409 1166
2021-01-28 47540 10190 221100 18160 52850 2601 2578 14740 1601 5547 3496 154400 5217 2678 39830 418 1171
2021-01-29 47710 10230 222100 18220 53210 2615 2588 14760 1611 5576 3507 155600 5258 2694 39910 428 1177
2021-01-30 47860 10260 223100 18270 53570 2625 2597 14780 1620 5606 3519 156700 5298 2710 39960 436 1183
2021-01-31 48020 10300 223800 18310 53940 2634 2607 14800 1630 5636 3530 157400 5340 2726 40020 446 1188
2021-02-01 48190 10340 224300 18360 54300 2663 2617 14820 1640 5666 3541 157900 5381 2742 40070 455 1194

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

[2021-01-07]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