The Washington Post:
“Money doesn’t buy happiness” is a cliche for a reason. The Nobel laureate psychologist/economist Daniel Kahneman and Princeton economist Angus Deaton have found that “emotional well-being” (that is, what emotions people report themselves as having felt the previous day) maxes out at around $75,000 of annual income, even though peoples’ evaluations of how well their lives are going rise indefinitely with income. “We conclude,” Kahneman and Deaton write, “that high income buys life satisfaction but not happiness.”
But this kind of analysis can be problematic when it’s used to compare whole societies, rather than individual people. In his Project Syndicate column on Friday, the economic historian Robert Skidelsky cited the work of Robert Easterlin in comparing happiness in rich and poor countries.
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