Category Archives: #America

14/2/21: COVID19 Update: U.S. vs EU27 comparatives

In previous posts, I covered the latest data for weekly Covid19 pandemic dynamics for:

  • Global data and trends:;
  • European & EU27 data and trends:; 
  • Data and trends for the most impacted countries and regions:; and
  • Data on COVID19 dynamics in BRIICS countries:
Now, as usual, EU27 (and Europe) comparatives to the U.S.

Start with new cases (weekly totals): 

Since the start of the pandemic, the U.S. has experienced three waves, against the EU27's two. The EU27's 2nd wave appears to have crested in week 45 of 2020, while the U.S.' current wave continued to rise until Week 1 of 2021. Over the last 8 weeks, US new cases exceeded those in the EU27 by 3,574,708 and population-size adjusted deaths by 29,150.

Next, weekly deaths:

The EU27's 2nd wave appears to have crested in week 48 of 2020 in terms of deaths, while the U.S.' current, third, wave continued to rise through week 3 of 2021. The EU27 weekly deaths counts show little signs of significant moderation since the Wave 2 peak, however, and are still running above Wave 1 peak.

Neither the U.S., nor the EU27 show any significant signs of deaths moderation that can be expected to occur in line with decline in new cases and vaccinations. This is surprising, because EU27 new cases moderated substantially since the peak of Wave 2.

Cumulated deaths per capita:

Since the start of Wave 2 in the EU27 (Wave 3 in the U.S.), EU27 deaths per capita have been converging with those in the U.S.

At the start of the EU27 Wave 2, U.S. total deaths per capita exceeded those in the EU27 by 87%. In week 5 of 2021, excess U.S. deaths compared to the EU27, cumulated over the period of pandemic stood at 96,595, or 108,1787 on the age-adjusted basis. 

In other words, U.S. cumulated deaths now exceed those in EU27 by 20.8 percent on population-size adjusted basis and by 23.3%. 

U.S. excess mortality compared to the EU27 and Europe, once we account for population differences is still rising:

In highly simplified terms, the U.S. pandemic experience has been associated with a cumulative excess mortality, compared to the EU27 and Europe of between 96,595 and 160,584 cases, respectively, based solely on differences in population sizes.

If older European and EU27 demographics are factored in, these excess U.S. deaths rise to 108,200 and 134,800, respectively.

I recently covered some new research on the policy-level failures in the U.S. during the COVID19 pandemic (see In simplified terms, the numbers above are shocking: were the U.S. to match policy responses in the EU27, we could have expected a death toll 96,600-108,200 lower than we currently observe. 

The U.S., however, managed much better than the EU27 in terms of deaths per case or the morbidity rate of the disease:

Overall new cases have become progressively less fatal through week 34 of 2020. This is most likely accounted for by improved and earlier diagnostics and treatments, as well as by increased share of infections detected in younger patients. These effects were exhausted around week 35 of 2020.

The 2nd wave of the pandemic in the EU27 was associated with a significant initial increase in severity. A smaller increase took place in the U.S. in the 3rd wave. Overall, the most recent wave of the pandemic saw relative uplift in the EU27 mortality rate, while the U.S. mortality rate continued to decline.

U.S. trend remains power-law, implying sustained decreases in mortality of new cases over time, while the EU27 trend has shifted toward a polynomial since Week 53 of 2020, implying rising risk of sustained increases in mortality.

In terms of the rate of change in weekly deaths: 

4-weeks average W/W rate of change in new cases, through Week 5 of 2021 was -20.7% in the  U.S. against -8.6% in the EU27.  4-weeks average W/W rate of change in deaths, through Week 5 of 2021 was -3.0% in the  U.S. against -1.9% in the EU27. 

A summary of the U.S.-EU27 comparatives:

14/2/21: COVID19 Update: BRIICS

 In previous posts, I covered the latest data for weekly Covid19 pandemic dynamics for:

Now, let's take a closer look at the pandemic dynamics in the BRIICS (Brazil, Russia, India, Indonesia, China and South Africa).

In broadly defined terms, there is an ongoing decline in both new cases and new deaths over the last week across all BRIICS. That said, it is too early to call the peaking of the second wave of this pandemic in terms of deaths counts, since weekly counts remain extremely high and show only one week of sustained declines. The good news is that last week's declines were evident in all BRIICS. Another good news is that we now have at least four consecutive weeks of declines in new cases across the entire group, except for Indonesia, where we only have one week of declines, and China. 

A summary table:

14/2/21: COVID19 Update: Most impacted countries


Previous posts on the COVID19 update covered global numbers and trends ( and European & EU27 trends (

Here are some comparatives across all countries with the highest rates of detected infections (> 5% of population):

Note: I highlighted countries with > 10 million population.

Another way of looking at this is to take countries with more than 250,000 confirmed cases, as presented in the next set of tables:

Comparing regions to the above countries:

And looking at the countries by population relatives:

The table above really drives home the depth of the crisis in Europe and the U.S. U.S. accounts so far fo 20 percent of global deaths, having just 4.3 percent of the global population. This gives the U.S. second worst ratio of its share of global deaths to its share of world population. Only the UK exceeds the U.S. in this horrific metric. The EU27 fall in the third place, below the U.S. with 21.4% of the world's deaths and 5.8% of the global population. 

14/2/21: COVID19 Update: Europe and EU27

 Summary table from the previous post covering worldwide trends ( puts Europe and EU 27 in the context of global trends:

The chart next shows weekly data dynamics for new cases for EU27 and Europe:

Both Europe and EU27 have experienced two waves of the pandemic, with the second wave characterized by two key features:
  1. Long and slow decline in the new cases counts, lasting from the peak of the wave around Week 45 of 2020; and 
  2. Re-acceleration in the wave into another local peak at Week 1 of 2021. 
The quick reversals of decline trend around Weeks 51-53 of 2020 is a worrying sign that improvements in overall pandemic trends are fragile.

The fragility of the trend in terms of improvements are even more evident in the numbers of new weekly deaths. Both Europe and EU27 are yet to confirm the peaking of the second wave of the pandemic in terms of weekly new deaths. Nominally, the peaks of the most recent wave in Week 49 of 2020 in the EU27 and Week 3 of 2021 in Europe have not, yet, been followed by accelerating or deepening declines in the deaths counts.

One clear positive trend remains in terms of mortality rates per case:

The caveat to the above is a slight uplift in mortality around Week 51 of 2020 as shown in the above.

Cumulated deaths per capita are exhibiting a slight slowdown over time (slope) but are still increasing at a rate massively in excess of what was witnessed during the period of Week 19-43 of 2020. In other words, we are not yet out of the woods, even compared to the pandemic dynamics of the Summer 2020.

As with global figures, it is too early to say anything about vaccinations effects on general trends.

14/2/21: COVID19 Update: Worldwide Data

 Worldwide trends for COVID19 pandemic in terms of cases and deaths:

There is some ambiguity in timing the waves of the pandemic. This ambiguity is driven by the dynamics of the new cases and, to a lesser extent, deaths. Globally, we have exited Wave 3 that started around Week 34 of 2020 and peaked in Week 1 of 2021. Promising dynamics aside, latest level of new infections remains at the levels well above Waves 1 and 2 peaks.

Weekly death counts have also peaked in Week 3 of 2021, marking the end of Wave 3. However, the latest death counts are the fifth highest on record and remain severely elevated compared to deaths recorded at the peak of Waves 1 and 2.

Recent decreases in mortality rate are most likely attributable to three key drivers: (1) earlier detection of cases due to improved testing; (2) younger demographics of those with confirmed infections; and (3) improved treatments in the earlier stages of the disease. The decrease in mortality appears to have stabilized and is slightly reversing in the first 5 weeks of 2021. This is the most worrying aspect of the three trends discussed above.

Here is a summary table, with green cells showing improvements and red cells showing deterioration in dynamics:

Last week's deaths have shown an improvement on 4 weeks average in all regions world-wide, and this has been consistent across all (excluding Asia) regions also in terms of new cases 4 weeks average compared to prior 4 weeks average. Deaths, however, are still up on the 4weeks average relative to prior 4 weeks average basis in most regions, with exception of two.

For now, it is hard to attribute the above improvements to vaccinations (long term solutions) and the improved dynamics are probably more consistent with a natural flow of the pandemic wave, reflecting tightening of restrictions on social activities in virtually all major geographies following the holidays season. This, along with the rapidly growing prevalence of the new, more infective, strands of the virus suggests that the gains made in recent weeks are at a risk of reversals.