18 June 2012

10 things economics can tell us about happiness

For the full thing, see this article at The Atlantic. #6 is for Mr Tout.
2) Generally speaking, richer people are happier people. But young people and the elderly appear less influenced by having more money. 
3) But money has diminishing returns -- like just about everything else. Satisfaction rises with income until about $75,000 (or perhaps as high as $120,000)... 
4) Income inequality reduces well-being, and higher public spending increases well-being. 
5) Unemployment just makes you miserable. 
6) Inflation makes you pretty unhappy, too. But its effect is weaker than unemployment. The mixed evidence seems to suggest that a volatile inflation rate decreases well-being, but in countries with generally stable prices, a little inflation has a small effect on happiness. And guess whose happiness inflation ruins the most? Right-wingers, apparently. 
7) Working more hours makes you happier ... until it makes you miserable. 
8) Commuters are less happy. 
9) Self-employed people are happier. When workers think they're good at their job and that their bosses like them, they're more satisfied. ... But another study suggests that only rich self-employed people are happier to be self-employed. 
10) Debt sucks. The kind of debt matters. Mortgage debt doesn't correlate much with happiness. Credit card debt does -- in a negative way. Either way, high debt correlates strongly with anxiety and depression.
H/t: The Interpreter


Post a Comment

<< Home