U.S. Is No Longer Among the 10 Most Prosperous Countries

Ten countries are now considered more prosperous than the United States, according to one ranking. But America still finishes first in one category.

Ten countries have now become more prosperous than the United States.

The U.S. is ranked No. 11 in the latest annual Prosperity Index, which was released this week by the Legatum Institute, an international think tank based in London.

The index ranks 142 countries overall and in eight categories:

  • The economy
  • Entrepreneurship and opportunity
  • Governance
  • Education
  • Health
  • Safety and security
  • Personal freedom
  • Social capital

The Legatum Institute states that its index is unique in that it’s based on both income and well-being:

Prosperity is more than just the accumulation of material wealth, it is also the joy of everyday life and the prospect of an even better life in the future.

Norway came in No. 1 overall for the seventh consecutive year. According to a Legatum press news release:

Norway comes out on top due the freedom it offers its citizens, the quality of its healthcare system and social bonds between its people.

The Scandinavian country had its highest ranking in the social capital category (No. 2), with 94 percent of people saying they can rely on friends and family in times of need. It had its lowest rankings in the safety and security category (No. 8) and the governance category (No. 8).

Overall, the United States fell one spot this year. Its highest ranking was in the health category (No. 1) and its lowest ranking was in the safety and security category (No. 33).

Nathan Gamester, director of the Prosperity Index at the Legatum Institute, states in the news release:

“The Prosperity Index tells us that human progress goes beyond economics. Norway and other countries at the top of the Index provide opportunity and freedom to their citizens, access to quality healthcare and education, and provide safe environments for people to flourish in.

“By contrast, those countries or regions of the world where people feel unsafe, where they are forced to flee from their homes, and where the education and healthcare systems are failing do not provide prosperity to their citizens.”

The countries that made the top 10 based on their overall scores this year are:

  1. Norway
  2. Switzerland
  3. Denmark
  4. New Zealand
  5. Sweden
  6. Canada
  7. Australia
  8. Netherlands
  9. Finland
  10. Ireland

What do you make of 10 countries now outranking the U.S. on the Prosperity Index? Sound off in our Forums. It’s the place where you can speak your mind, explore topics in-depth, and post questions and get answers.

Stacy Johnson

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