Swedes are not the happiest people on Earth, but they’re very close. Just take the fact that the country ended up in a respectable fifth place among 156 nations is something to be happy about, right? The UN just published a report on happiness in the world.
The highest levels of happiness can be found in northern Europe, and no people are as happy as Sweden's neighbors, the Danes. Following the Danes, the Norwegians, the Swiss, the Dutch, and then, the Swedes. Least happy are the people in Rwanda, Burundi, the Central African Republic, Benin and Togo – all in Africa. USA ends up as 17th on the World Happiness Report, just after - hm.. - Panama and Mexico.

The report is the second of its kind from the UN, and is it based on how people all over the world rank their general satisfaction of life, not just how they feel at the moment. Apart from financial conditions, other factors like life expectancy, what rights and freedoms people have, as well as welfare, play important parts in how happy people feel. The authors of the report believe that human happiness ought to be taken more seriously in measurements on how countries develop. In another study, published earlier this year, the Swedes were ranked the world’s second happiest people. See United Nations Human Development Index

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For more information:World Happiness Report 2013 by Earth Institute, Columbia University