Friday, June 18, 2004

Poor Europe

An interesting (but long) report by Timbro (a Swedish thinktank) comparing the wealth of U.S. and Europe. The conclusion of the report:

If the European Union were a state in the USA it would belong to the poorest group of states. France, Italy, Great Britain and Germany have lower GDP per capita than all but four of the states in the United States. In fact, GDP per capita is lower in the vast majority of the EU-countries (EU 15) than in most of the individual American states. This puts Europeans at a level of prosperity on par with states such as Arkansas, Mississippi and West Virginia. Only the miniscule country of Luxembourg has higher per capita GDP than the average state in the USA. The results of the new study represent a grave critique of European economic policy.

One result is that the average American has almost $10,000 more to spend than the average European, and thus a much greater economic standard of living. Residents of New Mexico are wealthier on average than the citizens of any European nation except Luxembourg. Connecticut is twice as wealthy as France or Britain. A resident of the poorest U.S. state (Mississippi) is wealthier on average than a citizen of the wealthiest region of Greece. I don't really have any comments on any of this, but I thought interesting.

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