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Chinese flag series
Meet characters crucial to China’s next phase of development: small factory owners, Western-educated “sea turtles” and college grads facing unemployment.

HONG KONG — The usual way to tell China’s incredible economic story is with big, brash numbers. 1.3 billion people! 4 trillion yuan spent on stimulus! 14.5 million cars sold! 3.25 billion tons of coal mined! 10 percent average GDP growth for three straight decades! But as that story has started to change, those numbers have become murkier. One thing is, clear, however. The story of straightforward growth no longer seems so simple.

China shoe factory woman
Wenzhou is a small coastal town in China with small business galore, but now loans have dried up and family factories are struggling.
Sea turtles swim to china
“Sea turtles,” or haigui, is the Mandarin term for overseas-educated Chinese who come home from abroad.
China college graduates
China can't promise employment to its young and educated either.
China economy old new
Q&A: Morgan Stanley’s emerging markets chief on China’s slowing growth, rising labor costs and the myth of the underperforming consumer