World Happiness Report: Happiness is up Latin America

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    Latin America happiness, World Happiness Report

    Latin America had the biggest increase in happiness according to the latest World Happiness Report. (Photo Shutterstock)

    The second annual World Happiness Report has been released and Latin America’s happiness levels have gone up in ranking.

    The top five happiest nations were all Europeans countries. They are, in descending order: Denmark, Norway, Switzerland, Netherlands, Sweden.

    That doesn’t mean that Latin American countries didn’t stack up well. In fact, Latin America actually had the biggest jump in from the 2005-2007 years when compared to the 2010-2012 years — Latin America beat out all others in increase in happiness.

    The war turmoils in the Middle East and the economic depression in Europe contributed to the happiness levels in those countries significantly going down.

    What is the World Happiness Report?

    According to the Sustainable Development Solutions Network: The World Happiness Report 2013 reveals fascinating trends in the data judging just how happy countries really are.

    On a scale running from 0 to 10, people in over 150 countries, surveyed by Gallup over the period 2010-12, the reports reveals a population-weighted average score of 5.1 (out of 10).

    Six key variables explain three-quarters of the variation in annual national average scores over time and among countries. These six factors include: real GDP per capita, healthy life expectancy, having someone to count on, perceived freedom to make life choices, freedom from corruption, and generosity.

    It might come as a surprise but three countries in Latin America actually scored above the U.S. which came in at 17th.Costa Rica (12th), Panama (15th) and Mexico (16th) both ranked above the U.S. All the rest of the Latin American countries stacked up pretty well against the rest of the world.

    The lowest ranking Latin American country was Honduras coming in 84th. The islands of Cuba and Puerto Rico were not included in the ranking.

    While many countries around the world seem to have gotten more depressed in the last few years, Latin American countries have become more joyful. Here’s a look at the World Happiness Report on Latin America:

    World Happiness Report 2013: Latin America

    List of Latin American countries ranked by happiness.

    • Costa Rica: 12
    • Panama: 15
    • Mexico: 16
    • Venezuela: 20
    • Brazil: 24
    • Chile: 28
    • Argentina: 29
    • Colombia: 35
    • Uruguay: 37
    • Guatemala: 47
    • Ecuador: 49
    • Bolivia: 50
    • El Salvador: 52
    • Paraguay: 54
    • Peru: 55
    • Nicaragua: 65
    • Honduras: 84

    US ranked 17th in World Happiness Report

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