COVID-19 short-term forecasts Deaths 2020-12-06 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:
    [2020-10-11]Short-term forecasting of the coronavirus pandemic (with Jennie Castle and David Hendry) is now in press at the International Journal of Forecasting.

Peak increase in estimated trend of Deaths in Latin America 2020-12-06

ArgentinaBoliviaBrazilChileColombiaCosta RicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEl SalvadorGuatemalaHaitiHondurasJamaicaMexicoPanamaParaguayPeruVenezuela
Peak date (mm-dd)10-0109-0707-2107-1708-2309-2809-0309-0711-2611-1807-1007-3009-2910-0507-2309-2607-2309-20
Peak daily increment 2439 1427 1065 785 318 18 22 3440 7 34 6 35 4 1724 28 20 2947 9
Days since peak 66 90 138 142 105 69 94 90 10 18 149 129 68 62 136 71 136 77
Last total 39770 8995 176941 15628 37808 1773 2345 13778 1159 4250 233 2946 265 109717 3193 1853 36231 919
Last daily increment 138 3 313 36 175 0 0 22 6 11 0 5 4 261 20 20 36 3
Last week 1040 38 3821 218 1042 47 14 317 45 79 0 28 8 3777 114 97 308 22
Previous peak date -- -- -- -- -- --04-1205-1008-0706-05 -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
Previous peak daily increment 22 167 11 43
Low between peaks 4 14 3 12

Deaths count forecast Latin America (bold red line in graphs) 2020-12-07 to 2020-12-13

DateArgentinaBoliviaBrazilChileColombiaCosta RicaEcuadorEl SalvadorGuatemalaHondurasMexicoPanamaParaguayPeruVenezuela
2020-12-06 39770 8995 176941 15628 37808 1773 13778 1159 4250 2946 109717 3193 1853 36231 919
2020-12-07 40080 9009 177000 15680 37980 1800 13820 1165 4255 2951 109900 3209 1869 36290 922
2020-12-08 40300 9019 177600 15700 38150 1809 13850 1170 4259 2956 110600 3224 1884 36340 925
2020-12-09 40530 9030 178300 15710 38320 1816 13890 1175 4269 2961 111400 3239 1899 36400 928
2020-12-10 40690 9042 179000 15800 38490 1829 13920 1180 4284 2966 111900 3253 1913 36450 931
2020-12-11 40920 9050 179600 15840 38650 1841 13960 1185 4292 2971 112400 3267 1927 36510 934
2020-12-12 41020 9058 180200 15870 38820 1841 13990 1190 4306 2976 113100 3282 1942 36560 937
2020-12-13 41140 9064 180400 15910 38990 1841 14030 1196 4312 2980 113300 3296 1956 36610 940

Deaths count average forecast Latin America (bold black line in graphs) 2020-12-07 to 2020-12-13

DateArgentinaBoliviaBrazilChileColombiaCosta RicaEcuadorEl SalvadorGuatemalaHondurasMexicoPanamaParaguayPeruVenezuela
2020-12-06 39770 8995 176941 15628 37808 1773 13778 1159 4250 2946 109717 3193 1853 36231 919
2020-12-07 39950 9002 177300 15670 37980 1794 13820 1166 4258 2950 110000 3210 1870 36280 922
2020-12-08 40150 9011 177900 15700 38140 1805 13850 1171 4266 2956 110800 3226 1884 36320 926
2020-12-09 40350 9021 178600 15720 38310 1816 13880 1176 4276 2961 111500 3241 1897 36350 930
2020-12-10 40510 9032 179200 15780 38480 1830 13910 1182 4288 2966 112100 3257 1911 36390 933
2020-12-11 40720 9041 179700 15810 38640 1843 13940 1187 4297 2972 112500 3272 1925 36420 937
2020-12-12 40880 9051 180300 15850 38810 1851 13970 1193 4312 2977 113300 3288 1939 36460 941
2020-12-13 41040 9060 180600 15880 38990 1858 13990 1198 4320 2982 113500 3303 1953 36490 944

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

[2020-10-11]Short-term forecasting of the coronavirus pandemic (with Jennie Castle and David Hendry) is now in press at the International Journal of Forecasting.
[2020-10-10]Temporarily 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