The 15 happiest economies in the world

Skyline of Bangkok, Thailand. The Land of Smiles has lived up to its moniker and received the lowest score on the misery index, and therefore the top spot on Bloomberg's happiest list. -- PHOTO: ST FILE 
Skyline of Bangkok, Thailand. The Land of Smiles has lived up to its moniker and received the lowest score on the misery index, and therefore the top spot on Bloomberg's happiest list. -- PHOTO: ST FILE 

On Tuesday, we gave you the 15 most miserable economies in the world, based on Bloomberg's "misery index", which sees inflation and unemployment as the two key factors that decide consumers' well-being.

Now, Bloomberg has come up with the 15 happiest economies, who scored lowest on the misery index of the 51 countries surveyed.

Five countries to note:

1. Thailand

Perhaps surprisingly given its recent troubles. Thailand is still under martial law after last year's military coup but the Land of Smiles manages to live up to its moniker.

With an unemployment rate of just 0.6 per cent and one of the lowest inflation rates in Asia, Thailand has received the lowest score on the misery index, and therefore the top spot on Bloomberg's happiest list.

Of course, Thailand still has a long way to go before it can match the living standards of more developed economies.

2. Japan

Emerging from a decades-long battle with deflation, Japan has found itself in third place with a projected inflation rate of 1 per cent and unemployment rate of 3.5 per cent for 2015, down from last year's 3.6 per cent.

3. China

With fairly low inflation and unemployment, the emerging giant of Asia has moved up two places to the seventh-happiest of the 51 economies surveyed by Bloomberg News.

4. The US

Just behind China in eighth place, the world's largest economy will fall behind only Norway and Hong Kong in GDP per capita this year according to International Monetary Fund (IMF) projections, but is held back on this list by its continuing high rate of unemployment.

5. Switzerland

It may be unsurprising that the fourth-wealthiest economy in the world is also the second-happiest. Switzerland placed fourth in the IMF's projections of GDP per capita in 2015, and comes in second on this list based on its low unemployment rate at 3.3 per cent, as well as its projected 0.9 per cent drop in prices in 2015.

Source: Bloomberg