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Editor's Note: This is a complimentary research note published by Director of Research Daryl Jones on April 6rd. CLICK HERE to get daily COVID-19 analysis and alerts from our research team and access our related webcasts.

“Plateaus are a manifestation of the law of diminishing returns, and when we reach one it simply means that it is time to adjust our methods.”
- Chris Matakas, “The Tao of Jiu Jitsu”


  • We remain tentative to extrapolate too much from weekend data, but it certainly seems that U.S. and global case growth has plateaued. The data appears to suggest extreme shutdowns and social distancing have had their intended effect. Now the question is: How long is the plateau?
  • Currently, the U.S. is at 337,971 COVID-19 cases and up about 8% day-over-day continuing the trend of declining daily growth rates
  • Global cases are now at 1,292,564 and are up ~6% from out note yesterday and also on a decline
  • Europe continues to see lower growth rates, while some of the emerging hot spots globally we’ve recently noted remain on the exponential trajectory

COVID-19 Update – Have We Plateaued? (4/6/2020)  - 01.27.2020 coronavirus cartoon  4


The U.S. has now performed 1,785,406 tests with 334,487 positives (18.7% positive test ratio), 9,586 deaths (2.9% of total positives), and 41,757 total hospitalizations (12.4% of total positives).

In the chart below, we look at U.S. data over the past three weeks (roughly the time frame when serious social distancing measures were put in effect).  Obviously, the data looks promising as the daily growth continues to trend lower and daily new cases are looking close to peak.

COVID-19 Update – Have We Plateaued? (4/6/2020)  - covid.4.6.1

We updated our chart of NYC with data as of this morning and while new daily cases remain high, NYC hit a new low in daily growth.

COVID-19 Update – Have We Plateaued? (4/6/2020)  - covid.4.6.2

If we look beneath the proverbial hood in the U.S., the improvement is wide-spread.  The one exception is California which saw its four-day growth rate pick up marginally.

COVID-19 Update – Have We Plateaued? (4/6/2020)  - covid.4.6.3

Quick note on Canada for my Canadian brothers and sisters.  Canada is currently at 15,821 cases, which ranks it at 41st globally on cases per million people.  Interestingly, there is a huge skew in terms of provincial breakdown, with Quebec being a major outlier on cases per million people. 

Assuming proximity to NYC and travel to Florida are influencing Quebec numbers.

Canada has also been experiencing slightly elevated growth rates vis-à-vis the rest of the world over the last week growing at 108% (slightly higher than that U.S. at 107%).

COVID-19 Update – Have We Plateaued? (4/6/2020)  - covid.4.6.4

My hometown of Bassano, Alberta has so far recorded zero cases and my parents are safely quarantined, though no doubt missing their weekly shuffle-board games at the senior’s drop-in center

European Situation

Daily new case load remains high in Europe (north of 30,000), but the daily growth rates continue to trend lower.  After a spike this weekend due to France re-categorizing nursing home cases, daily new cases dropped back down to their trend. 

COVID-19 Update – Have We Plateaued? (4/6/2020)  - covid.4.6.5

Italy and Spain were the beginning in Europe and now appear to be the beginning of the end of this phase of COVID-19.

Spain recorded 637 deaths on Monday and 1,279 new cases, the lowest increases since mid-March. Similar story in Italy, the lowest deaths at 525 since March 14 and lowest daily new cases since of 3,599 since March 17.

The U.K. had their Prime Minister moved to the hospital due to COVID-19 and continues to see the highest growth rates in Europe still in the ~10% daily range.

 Europe has plateaued and will be important to watch in terms of gauging how quickly the plateau of new daily cases declines.

Rest of World

As we’ve been noting, Japanese cases have started to grow again.  As a result, the Japanese Prime Minister has implemented a month-long state of emergency as of today.

In general, the global story looked great over the last 24 hours as growth rate dropped to just above 6% and daily new cases were ~75,000.

We would caveat this a bit as there has been a bit of trend of lower numbers being reported over the weekend, but we like the trend.

COVID-19 Update – Have We Plateaued? (4/6/2020)  - covid.4.6.6

Global hot spots to continue to monitor:

    • Brazil 11,254 cases, +894 day-over-day
    • Turkey 27,069, +3,135
    • Canada 1,512, +1,600
    • Russia 5,389, +658
    • Peru 2,281, +535
    • Japan 3,654, +515 (new high)
    • Pakistan 3,157, +535
    • India 4,289, +701
    • Chile 4,471, +310