COVID-19 short-term forecasts Deaths 2021-02-15 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 2021-02-15

ArgentinaBelizeBoliviaBrazilChileColombiaCosta RicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEl SalvadorGuatemalaHaitiHondurasJamaicaMexicoPanamaParaguayPeruUruguayVenezuela
Peak date (mm-dd)10-0112-0312-29 --07-172021-01-2009-2809-0309-072021-01-032021-01-1507-1212-2909-292021-01-262021-01-1409-262021-02-052021-01-192021-01-11
Peak daily increment 2487 6 17 787 389 18 22 3440 25 33 3 21 4 1239 47 20 197 9 9
Days since peak 137 74 48 213 26 140 165 161 43 31 218 48 139 20 32 142 10 27 35
Last total 50327 313 11234 239773 19624 57786 2730 2959 15355 1750 6150 247 3893 378 174657 5642 2953 43880 541 1285
Last daily increment 91 0 32 528 83 181 16 15 34 8 26 0 27 4 450 6 17 177 6 6
Last week 761 3 305 6253 540 1279 32 95 269 49 195 1 104 19 6225 111 91 1254 35 38
Previous peak date -- --09-0707-22 --08-23 --04-1205-1008-0706-05 --07-30 --10-0507-23 --07-23 --09-20
Previous peak daily increment 1439 1063 318 23 166 11 43 35 1833 28 2944 9
Low between peaks 3 125 4 14 2 11 5 343 10 48 3

Deaths count forecast Latin America (bold red line in graphs) 2021-02-16 to 2021-02-22

DateArgentinaBoliviaBrazilChileColombiaCosta RicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEl SalvadorGuatemalaHondurasMexicoPanamaParaguayPeruUruguayVenezuela
2021-02-15 50327 11234 239773 19624 57786 2730 2959 15355 1750 6150 3893 174657 5642 2953 43880 541 1285
2021-02-16 50610 11290 241000 19640 57980 2748 2977 15390 1758 6181 3912 176300 5665 2968 44000 547 1291
2021-02-17 50710 11340 242200 19660 58170 2751 2996 15420 1766 6212 3931 177600 5688 2982 44170 554 1297
2021-02-18 50880 11390 243500 19810 58350 2758 3014 15450 1774 6242 3949 178600 5710 2996 44350 560 1303
2021-02-19 51070 11440 244600 19890 58540 2762 3032 15480 1782 6271 3968 180200 5733 3010 44520 567 1309
2021-02-20 51230 11490 245300 19970 58720 2763 3051 15510 1789 6301 3986 181500 5755 3024 44690 573 1315
2021-02-21 51270 11540 246000 20060 58910 2763 3069 15540 1797 6331 4004 181700 5778 3038 44860 579 1321
2021-02-22 51410 11590 246400 20140 59090 2777 3087 15570 1805 6361 4022 182000 5801 3051 45040 586 1326

Deaths count average forecast Latin America (bold black line in graphs) 2021-02-16 to 2021-02-22

DateArgentinaBoliviaBrazilChileColombiaCosta RicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEl SalvadorGuatemalaHondurasMexicoPanamaParaguayPeruUruguayVenezuela
2021-02-15 50327 11234 239773 19624 57786 2730 2959 15355 1750 6150 3893 174657 5642 2953 43880 541 1285
2021-02-16 50460 11280 241100 19680 57960 2735 2975 15390 1758 6181 3911 176000 5659 2969 44110 546 1291
2021-02-17 50580 11330 242300 19720 58150 2741 2994 15420 1766 6213 3929 177300 5681 2984 44230 552 1297
2021-02-18 50740 11380 243500 19820 58350 2750 3012 15440 1773 6246 3947 178500 5702 2999 44400 559 1303
2021-02-19 50900 11430 244600 19880 58540 2756 3031 15460 1781 6278 3965 180000 5724 3014 44520 565 1309
2021-02-20 51050 11470 245400 19950 58730 2763 3049 15480 1789 6311 3983 181300 5745 3030 44670 571 1315
2021-02-21 51150 11520 246300 20020 58920 2770 3068 15500 1796 6344 4000 181700 5767 3045 44850 577 1321
2021-02-22 51330 11570 246700 20080 59120 2785 3087 15510 1804 6377 4018 182100 5789 3061 44960 584 1327

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