The Lockdown Effect: A Counterfactual for Sweden

36 Pages Posted: 20 May 2020 Last revised: 15 Mar 2021

See all articles by Benjamin Born

Benjamin Born

Frankfurt School of Finance & Management

Alexander Dietrich

University of Tübingen

Gernot J. Müller

University of Tuebingen - Department of Economics

Date Written: May 2020

Abstract

While most countries imposed a lockdown in response to the first wave of COVID-19 infections, Sweden did not. To quantify the lockdown effect, we approximate a counterfactual lockdown scenario for Sweden through the outcome in a synthetic control unit. We find, first, that a 9-week lockdown in the first half of 2020 would have reduced infections and deaths by about 75% and 38%, respectively. Second, the lockdown effect starts to materialize with a delay of 3-4 weeks only. Third, the actual adjustment of mobility patterns in Sweden suggests there has been substantial voluntary social restraint, although the adjustment was less strong than under the lockdown scenario. Lastly, we find that a lockdown would not have caused much additional output loss.

JEL Classification: C4, E0, I18

Suggested Citation

Born, Benjamin and Dietrich, Alexander and Müller, Gernot J., The Lockdown Effect: A Counterfactual for Sweden (May 2020). CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP14744, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3603976

Benjamin Born (Contact Author)

Frankfurt School of Finance & Management ( email )

Adickesallee 32-34
Frankfurt am Main, 60322
Germany

Alexander Dietrich

University of Tübingen ( email )

Germany

Gernot J. Müller

University of Tuebingen - Department of Economics ( email )

Mohlstrasse 36
D-72074 Tuebingen, 72074
Germany

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
0
Abstract Views
1,977
PlumX Metrics