Money can buy happiness

We thought the following post was an interesting read, although we can’t agree on whether the Brits are a greedy bunch or an easily pleased bunch…

Read the original article here

Money can’t buy you love but £83,000 is enough to keep Brits happy, according to a global survey.

The nation is satisfied with just £83,000, compared to £101,000 globally.  According to a study of more than 5,000 workers across the world, an annual income of no less than $161,810 (£101,812) is needed to make a happy life. This is 15 times the global average salary.

Overall some 80% of individuals believe that earning this amount would be enough to keep them happy for the entire year.

The Wealth Sentiment Survey commissioned by International Investment company Skandia International found the highest levels of aspired income were from individuals in Dubai. Residents of the UAE state would need $276,150 (£173,780) to be happy.

The next highest financial aspirations were in Singapore and Hong Kong, who need an annual income of $227,563 and $197,702 respectively.

Europeans, however, are happier with much less. The global economic downturn has taken its toll on high expectations of wealth.

People in Germany had the most modest needs, wanting just $85,781. Britons had the second highest price for happinessin Europe at $133,010 (£83,600), behind Italy at $175,825.

The study found that women are more money hungry than men in some countries, reporting higher ambitions to feel content. For example, in Hong Kong, women need 13% ($207,924) more than their male counterparts in order to feel happy. Women in Italy need 11% ($187,036) and those in Brazil need as much as 55% more ($192,929).

“There are many more things in life that can make people happy but there is no doubt that money can help.  It is fascinating to see the regional differences in levels of income and capital that people think they need to feel happy and wealthy,” said Phil Oxenham, marketing manager at Skandia International.

“These figures are, of course, aspirational and for most of us the important thing is to have a financial plan and make sure that we are saving as much as we can to give us financial security.”

The research looked to explore and understand people’s attitude and feelings towards wealth; only three in 20 individuals regarding themselves as wealthy.

To gain the wealthy reputation, the study found that you need an average of $1.76million (£1.1million) in disposable assets.

People in Austria and Germany reported a higher than average sentiment of feeling ‘wealthy’ with one in five saying they fall into this category.

Brazilians feel the richest with more than a quarter of people saying they feel affluent. It might not come as a surprise that a massive 93% of Brazilians believe that money can bring them happiness.

Europeans feel a much lower correlation between happiness and money. Germans recorded the lowest number of people (68%) who think money makes them happy.

Residents of Chile, Peru and Colombia have the lowest percentages of individuals who feel wealthy. Only three in 100 people feel wealthy in these countries.

In Europe, only 14% of Britons, 13% of Italians and less than a tenth of French people consider themselves wealthy.

It’s no wonder why people don’t feel wealthy with the globally average income people think you need to be affluent is a massive US $161,000 – a massive 15 times the global average income.

Despite the global financial crisis and economic doom and gloom, more than half of individuals feel that they have become more financially affluent since the financial meltdown in 2008.

The biggest form of debt, apart from mortgages, comes in the form of credit cards and more than a fifth of people (22%) of people are the most unhappy about repaying their debts.

Britons might not be feeling flush but they are slightly better off than before according to separate study. The nation’s pay rise winners – metal welders – have seen their wages increase by 22.2% to double the national average.

Heath and social services managers, as well as managers in financial institutions, are also high on the list of wage winners, rising 21.1% and 22% respectively.

According to the study by specialist recruiter Randstad, a pay rise of around a fifth is minimal in ‘real’ terms. This means that despite a rise in wages, they might not match the rising cost of living.

High levels of inflation take a dramatic toll on the nation’s finances, especially wages. The study suggested that anything under an increase of 19.3% would represent a fall in ‘real’ wages.

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