Commentators seeking to understand the long‑term implications of COVID‑19 (a coronavirus) are frequently comparing it with the 2002–2003 severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) outbreak, which had a severe impact on both the Chinese and the global economies. But the 2003 SARS outbreak coincided with slowing global gross domestic product (GDP) growth, the Iraq War, and higher oil prices. So is SARS really a good case study for understanding the likely economic effects of COVID‑19? And if it is not, what other evidence can we turn to?
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