Sunday, June 20, 2004

Europe vs. America. The WSJ comments on a report by two Swedish economists entitled "The EU vs. USA" comparing the GDP per capita of Europe to the USA. Its astonishing what a difference there is between the two places. For example, the percentage of Americans living below the poverty line has dropped to 12% from 22% since 1959. In 1999, 25% of American households were considered "low income, " meaning they had an annual income of less than $25,000. If Sweden were judged by the same standard, about 40% of its households would be considered low income. Germany and Italy just barely exceed Arkansas in GDP per capita. If the US had frozen in place at 2000 levels while Europe grew, Switzerland and Britain would need until 2010 to get there if they continued growing at their present rates.

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