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May 4, 2024 | Posted in: Wealth Strategies

The Gallup Organization conducts a poll that attempts to gauge the relative happiness of people in each of 143 countries. It also conducts a detailed statistical analysis of the results finding that six variables explain about three-quarters of the variation from one country to another. They are:
• GDP per capita
• Social Support
• Life expectancy at birth
• Freedom to make life choices
• Generosity
• Perceptions of corruption.
The following graphic displays the results:

The top ranked countries are primarily located in Northern Europe (Finland, Denmark, Iceland, Sweden) while the most unhappy are characterized by poverty or conflict as in the case of Afghanistan, Lebanon, Lesotho, Sierra Leone, and the Congo. The U.S. ranks 23rd overall. Unfortunately, it falls in the twenty countries that experienced the greatest decline in happiness between 2010 and 2023. While happiness is hard to measure which might lead one to be somewhat skeptical of this report, the outcome is consistent with the divisiveness and dysfunction that seem to characterize our country.