Posted by: Josh Lehner | January 29, 2021

Encouraging Pandemic Progress (Graph of the Week)

For this edition of the Graph of the Week I am bringing over a new chart from our COVID-19 tracking page. To be honest, that page had not been updated the past two weeks. Apologies for that. But as I was updating it yesterday, the sharp improvements in the pandemic really stood out to me, especially given we know the macroeconomy has temporarily stalled out during the winter months. The number of new COVID cases, and the number of current hospitalizations have fallen nearly 50 percent in the past month or two. Vaccinations continue to increase. Given household incomes remain largely in good shape*, the outlook brightens with every inoculation.

The bottom line is we know the pandemic is not over yet. New daily case counts are flattening in the past week or so. New variants are beginning to circulate that may or may not pose additional risks. Ultimately vaccine supply and delivery need to ramp up further for most of us to be able to get it in the not too distant future. But that process is underway. To the extent we continue to limit the about of economic scarring, or permanent damage that accumulates during the pandemic, the recovery should be stronger, and faster than in recent cycles. I hope this chart lifts your spirits a bit here heading into the weekend. I know it did mine.

* U.S. December data released this morning show a rise in incomes last month and a drop in spending. Some of the income growth was due to the federal aid that was approved near the very end of the year, while the spending declines are in part due to more restrictive health policies around the country trying to stop the spread of the virus as it raged in early winter. Overall, the recovery remains intact.


  1. […] Source: Encouraging Pandemic Progress (Graph of the Week) | Oregon Office of Economic Analysis […]

  2. […] hope the pandemic progress Graph of the Week cheered you up a bit heading into last weekend because I’m here to bring you […]

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