Global Fear Index Data for the COVID-19 Pandemic

Published: 30 April 2020| Version 1 | DOI: 10.17632/yhs329pd7d.1
Contributors:
Afees Salisu,
Lateef Akanni

Description

The COVID-19 Global Fear Index (GFI) seeks to measure daily concerns and emotions on the spread and severity of COVID-19 since the pandemic declaration. Excessive fears could have significant implications on investment sentiments and decisions, and as such affecting prices such as stocks and oil prices. Relying on the official reports of COVID-19 cases and deaths across the globe, the GFI is a composite index of two factors; Reported Cases and Reported Deaths, on a scale of 0 to 100, respectively indicating no fear to extreme fear/panic. An index value of 50 is considered neutral, while anything higher signals more fear than usual. We employed what we referred to as the incubation period expectation (EPE) in daily reported cases and deaths in constructing the index. The EPE is defined as the time expectation between when a person could be exposed to the Coronavirus and the emergence of symptoms of the disease. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), most estimates of the incubation period for COVID-19 range from 1-14 days (WHO, 2020). The first component of GFI is the Reported Cases Index (RCI) which measures how far peoples’ expectations on reported cases in the preceding 14-days period veered from the present day’s reported case. The choice of 14-day expectations represents the highest number of days for COVID-19 incubation period as defined by the WHO. The RCI for a given day is computed as the ratio of COVID-19 reported cases globally on the day under consideration and the sum of reported cases from the start of the incubation period to the current day. The ratio is then multiplied by 100 to give the index on a scale between 0 and 100. The second component is the Reported Deaths Index (RDI) and measures how far peoples’ expectations from reported deaths in the preceding 14-days period veered from the present day’s reported deaths. The RDI, just as the RCI, is computed as the ratio of COVID-19 related reported deaths across the world and the sum of reported deaths on the day under consideration day and the start of its incubation period (14 days ago). The ratio is also multiplied by 100 to give an index between 0 and 100. Finally, the construct of the GFI pulls the two indexes together with equal weights assigned to obtain the composite index. The composite index is given as the simple average of RCI and RDI defined above. The higher the value of GFI, the higher the global fear of the COVID-19 pandemic. Steps to reproduce the data (optional) The codes used to produce the data are contained the excel spread sheet. With basic MS excel skills, the data can easily be reproduced. Nonetheless, we hope to provide regular updates to encourage the use of the data for empirical analyses. References https://www.who.int/docs/default-source/coronaviruse/situation-reports/20200402-sitrep-73-covid-19.pdf Cited by this dataset https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/situation-reports Is related to this dataset

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