CHINA HAD long been the only large economy with an annual growth target. On May 22nd the government said it would not set one this year, so profound is the uncertainty wrought by the pandemic. Economists applauded: the target obsession led to much wasteful investment and some book-cooking. With a little digging you can still get an idea of how fast the government expects the economy to expand. Its budget projections suggest that it is implicitly aiming for nominal growth of 5.4% in 2020.

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This article appeared in the Finance & economics section of the print edition under the headline “China’s growth target”

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