UK living standards outstrip US

#1
http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/economics/article3137506.ece

LIVING standards in Britain are set to rise above those in America for the first time since the 19th century, according to a report by the respected Oxford Economics consultancy.

The calculations suggest that, measured by gross domestic product per capita, Britain can now hold its head up high in the economic stakes after more than a century of playing second fiddle to the Americans.

It says that GDP per head in Britain will be £23,500 this year, compared with £23,250 in America, reflecting not only the strength of the pound against the dollar but also the UK economy’s record run of growth and rising incomes going back to the early 1990s.

In those days, according to Oxford Economics, Britain’s GDP per capita was 34% below that in America, 33% less than in Germany and 26% lower than in France. Now, not only have average incomes crept above those in America but they are more than 8% above France (£21,700) and Germany (£21,665).

“The past 15 years have seen a dramatic change in the UK’s economic performance and its position in the world economy,” said Adrian Cooper, managing director of Oxford Economics. “No longer are we the ‘sick man of Europe’. Indeed, our calculations suggest that UK living standards are now a match for those of the US.”
And who personally has contributed to it? You know him btw.
 
#2
This is interesting because if you Google the worlds richest countries this site is at the top of the list:

Link here

It appears that Ireland is richer by GDP than the UK by a very long way but by this account the UK is on £15894 GDP with the USA on £22019 GDP by todays exchange rates.

I never know which yardstick to go by though because I checked a US government site once (don't ask, long night shift, very bored) and one day it said that the USA was about the same as the UK but I looked again a few days later and it had almost doubled.

Who are you supposed to believe?
 
#3
GDP per capita, whilst a perfectly good measure of economic performance, does not equate to a measure of living standards. The lower tax rates in the USA and the lower costs of goods and services - think particularly of the cost of petrol versus the cost of "gas" - means that every $1.97 buys them far more than £1 buys us.
 
#5
Idrach said:
GDP per capita, whilst a perfectly good measure of economic performance, does not equate to a measure of living standards. The lower tax rates in the USA and the lower costs of goods and services - think particularly of the cost of petrol versus the cost of "gas" - means that every $1.97 buys them far more than £1 buys us.
Yes but then petrol is not as good as it appears either because of larger and less efficient engines and, on average, greater distances travelled than compared to the UK. Plus much higher rates for car insurance. For example I was paying £250 fully comp in UK, here in the US we're paying over $1000 per year, per vehicle.

The property taxes in the US are really high as they are based on a percentage of the purchase price of your property.

Groceries are more expensive than the UK.

Then when you factor in possible medical bills...

The grass isn't always greener!
 
#7
GDP per capita isn't the best measure of standard of living. Even just within the economic sphere there are better indicators such as purchasing power parity.

This struck home on Christmas Eve when, just after getting back into this country I was waiting in Paddington Stn for a train to my parents' place and in a little over 90mins I managed to blow the better part of $200- not including the cost of the train ticket:

All-day breakfast and an OJ at the rather aptly named "Sloe"- $20
5 Christmas cards- $35
2 bags in left luggage- $26
Zone 1-2 travelcard (offpeak)- $11
Cashmere scarf (stocking filler) in S Kensington shop- $40
2 pints of wifebeater for random squaddie and self- $15
Clarkson's book- $20
Bottle of water & sandwich for the trip home- $15

In conclusion. The report is b0llocks. The UK is a rip-off and, once again, I'm glad I left.
 
#8
From Nation Master - Economy Statistics > GDP (purchasing power parity) (per capita) (most recent) by country
This entry gives the gross domestic product (GDP) or value of all final goods and services produced within a nation in a given year. A nation's GDP at purchasing power parity (PPP) exchange rates is the sum value of all goods and services produced in the country valued at prices prevailing in the United States. This is the measure most economists prefer when looking at per-capita welfare and when comparing living conditions or use of resources across countries. The measure is difficult to compute, as a US dollar value has to be assigned to all goods and services in the country regardless of whether these goods and services have a direct equivalent in the United States (for example, the value of an ox-cart or non-US military equipment); as a result, PPP estimates for some countries are based on a small and sometimes different set of goods and services. In addition, many countries do not formally participate in the World Bank's PPP project that calculates these measures, so the resulting GDP estimates for these countries may lack precision. For many developing countries, PPP-based GDP measures are multiples of the official exchange rate (OER) measure. The difference between the OER- and PPP-denominated GDP values for most of the weathly industrialized countries are generally much smaller. Per capita figures expressed per 1 population.
Has Ireland seventh, the US eighth and and UK 28th.

Of course this sort of stat is largely bolloxs. The distribution of wealth is skewed upwards in Ireland the UK and US. How egalitarian the wealth spread in a country is always needs to be considered. The Gini Index is an imperfect measure of this. Above the subsistence level there's a close inverse correlation between equality of wealth distribution and most measure of well being in a society.

Economy Statistics > Distribution of family income > Gini index (most recent) by country. The higher the ranking the more unequal the wealth distribution. Here the US is ahead of much of the Third world at 39th but behind the UK at 70th and Ireland at 76th. The big EU countries are in there figures but behind the Danes at 122nd.

Wiki has an article on this here. Green trends to red as the fat cats get fatter.
 
#9
PsyWar.Org said:
Idrach said:
GDP per capita, whilst a perfectly good measure of economic performance, does not equate to a measure of living standards. The lower tax rates in the USA and the lower costs of goods and services - think particularly of the cost of petrol versus the cost of "gas" - means that every $1.97 buys them far more than £1 buys us.
Yes but then petrol is not as good as it appears either because of larger and less efficient engines and, on average, greater distances travelled than compared to the UK. Plus much higher rates for car insurance. For example I was paying £250 fully comp in UK, here in the US we're paying over $1000 per year, per vehicle.

The property taxes in the US are really high as they are based on a percentage of the purchase price of your property.

Groceries are more expensive than the UK.
Car Insurance cost are down to all the Lawsuits that happens a lot over there.


PsyWar.Org said:
Then when you factor in possible medical bills...

The grass isn't always greener!
Medical bills is one of the biggest cost for most US Citizens, Medical insurance is NOT cheap, I did a little research, the cheapest medical Insurance on maximum co-pay was $250 a month single person, it gets higher with spouse/Partner and kids, so much so, that the poorest cannot afford insurance, in fact last time I looked about 20m US citizen have no coverage and do not qualify for medicare.
even having Insurance is no guarantee that you will be covered, their main motivation is Profit and they will find get out clauses such as declaring treatments or test as too experimental to be cost effective or failed to disclose facts invalidating cover etc

Its quite scandelous.

wages for the Majority is not that good, this is where GDP is a little skewed, the top 5% has most of the Cash and political clout, Unions are neutuered, Employment protection is practically nil, 2 weeks holidays for most, part time, hourly based and temp employment is making up the new jobs created out of the ashes of the Old, many Companies are dumping Medical Insurance as part of the perks.

I had considered moving to the US til I worked out how much it will cost overall.
too many Briits are seduced by the Florida lifestyle and rush into living there without considering the implications, Florida is fantasyland, real America is a little different, I like the Country, the scenery and the variety of Cities being so different from each other, you can make a success of it if you are willing to do so, but for me , no thanks, nice to visit but not to stay.

Britain has a lot going for it in spite of the issues we are facing which USA and Canada is also facing Mass Immigration, incompetent Politicians etc

personally I think the Dollar and American Century is over, its now the time of the Euro as a World Currency which is being widely accepted and adopted in place of the Dollar as prime trading currency.
 
#10
semper said:
Medical bills is one of the biggest cost for most US Citizens, Medical insurance is NOT cheap, I did a little research, the cheapest medical Insurance on maximum co-pay was $250 a month single person, it gets higher with spouse/Partner and kids, so much so, that the poorest cannot afford insurance, in fact last time I looked about 20m US citizen have no coverage and do not qualify for medicare.
even having Insurance is no guarantee that you will be covered, their main motivation is Profit and they will find get out clauses such as declaring treatments or test as too experimental to be cost effective or failed to disclose facts invalidating cover etc

Its quite scandelous.
For us it was even worse than that. My wife and I's medical insurance was $700 per month. After the premature birth of our boy, the insurance just decided they weren't going to pay a sizable amount of the huge medical bill. So the bill falls on us and there's nothing we can do about it. This is not an isolated case, it happens all the time. Medical bills are the biggest cause of bankruptcy in the US.

Even with insurance, your liability can be large. Another example, I will be having a simple crown on my tooth next week. My part of the bill, after the insurance has paid its part, is $800. If I didn't have insurance the bill would be $1500. Last month a friend back in the UK had a crown done privately at a cost of under £400 without any dental insurance.

As for Florida, the climate is rather difficult to live with 24/7. The first year it was great but the novelty of the heat and humidity soon wears off and at the end of the second year we moved to northern California. The climate here is much nicer, IMO.
 
#11
crabtastic said:
GDP per capita isn't the best measure of standard of living. Even just within the economic sphere there are better indicators such as purchasing power parity.

This struck home on Christmas Eve when, just after getting back into this country I was waiting in Paddington Stn for a train to my parents' place and in a little over 90mins I managed to blow the better part of $200- not including the cost of the train ticket:

All-day breakfast and an OJ at the rather aptly named "Sloe"- $20
5 Christmas cards- $35
2 bags in left luggage- $26
Zone 1-2 travelcard (offpeak)- $11
Cashmere scarf (stocking filler) in S Kensington shop- $40
2 pints of wifebeater for random squaddie and self- $15
Clarkson's book- $20
Bottle of water & sandwich for the trip home- $15

In conclusion. The report is b0llocks. The UK is a rip-off and, once again, I'm glad I left.
Ah, but that is central London. The rest of the UK is about 60% cheaper and 90% friendlier. And the dollar has bottomed out against the pound.
 

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