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Economic Brief

Sept. 3, 2020

Richmond Fed Highlights New COVID-19 Forecasting Model

The Richmond Fed’s latest Economic Brief highlights a new statistical model that captures and forecasts the dynamics of COVID-19 in all 50 states and Washington, D.C.

Richmond Fed economists designed the model to replicate the typical pattern of infections during a pandemic, but the model also allows for flexibility in how patterns of infections and deaths evolve among individual jurisdictions. Today’s Economic Brief focuses on North Carolina and Washington, D.C., because they have experienced different trajectories of the pandemic. The model suggests, for example, that higher levels of social distancing and testing could have reduced infections and deaths more in North Carolina than in Washington, given the other characteristics of the regions.

The Richmond Fed’s Economic Brief series provides essays on economic issues and trends. Sign up to receive an email notification when a new essay is posted.


As part of our nation’s central bank, the Richmond Fed is one of 12 regional Reserve Banks working together with the Board of Governors to support a healthy economy and deliver on our mission to foster economic stability and strength. We connect with community and business leaders across the Fifth Federal Reserve District — including the Carolinas, District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia, and most of West Virginia — to monitor economic conditions, address issues facing our communities, and share this information with monetary and financial policymakers. We also work with banks to ensure they are operating safely and soundly, supply financial institutions with currency that’s fit for distribution, and provide a safe and efficient way to transfer funds through our nation’s payments system.

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