Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Different Cities = Different Salaries for Happiness?

Hello world.

Source:  Wikipedia
For the inaugural post of this happy blog, we have an interesting story by Phil Izzo from The Wall Street Journal. Phil writes that a new study has found that overall happiness in America drops off after a salary of $75,000 a year. In other words, once you make $75,000 a year (on average), a raise won't make you any happier.

But as we all know, $75,000 can't buy as much in New York as it does in Wyoming, so the article goes on to compare the "happiness salaries" of several major American cities. According to the chart, New York City has the highest happiness cap at $163,500, while Fort Smith, AK, at $62,250 has the lowest.

Psychologists have long known that money doesn't buy happiness--as long as you're above the poverty line (read Daniel Gilbert's book Stumbling on Happiness for more information). This may be the first time a specific price has been put on happiness, though. Depending on how you look at it, this could be good news or bad news. On the one hand, people in Fort Smith apparently require less to be happy. On the other, it's probably a sign that they make less to begin with, so they may have less opportunity to reach the goal anyway.

What do YOU think?

Also, since this blog is just getting started, what would YOU like to see more of? It's lonely being a new blog, so leave us a comment or three. You can also email me specifically at

1 comment:

  1. Great topic and a great film if you havent seen the trailer! There's more on this in a great article by the NY Times...