Iceland among the happiest nations

Icelanders are very satisfied with their lives compared to other nations, according to a new international poll by Capacent Gallup.

Around the world about half of respondents said they are happy with life; while three quarters of those surveyed in Iceland said they are happy.

73 percent of Icelanders are satisfied with their lives, seven percent dissatisfied, 19 percent neither satisfied nor dissatisfied and one percent chose not to say.

On a global scale 53 percent of people are satisfied with their lives, 13 percent dissatisfied, 31 percent neither satisfied nor dissatisfied and three percent chose not to say.

The research found that there is a massive difference between people’s happiness in different parts of the world. Life satisfaction measured lowest in the Arab countries; where one fifth of people say they are happy. In addition to this, only a quarter of respondents in Eastern Europe reported happiness.

Satisfaction with life runs highest in Africa and Latin America; where two thirds of people say they are happy, RÚV reported.

Although the Gross Domestic Product of the United States is higher than nearly all Western European economies combined, and its citizens are generally more positive about their country’s economic future than most Europeans, Americans are still generally unhappy with life, according to the poll. Half of Western Europeans surveyed said they are satisfied with their lives, but only a third of Americans.

The idea that money cannot buy happiness seems particularly poignant in this instance; and happiness has very little to do with material wealth.

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