Wednesday, May 27, 2015

A penny saved is a penny earned


I wanted to find out in which country one can save the most. I couldn't find an accurate study (OECD, WorldBank etc.) on this, so decided to do my own analysis.

Ex post facto: I recently came across "Local purchasing power". It is probably the most helpful (complex) data for this type of analysis. However I still like my calculation for its easiness and clarity.

There are two dominant parameters: salary (what goes in) and the cost living (what goes out).

For the first, using average monthly disposable salary is the best option; simply because it's after-tax. Taken from Numbeo.

There is no easy standard measure for the cost of living. I basically assumed that my monthly expense would be 300 BigMacs / month. BigMac prices are easily available on The Economist's BigMac Index.

I used 2014 data. All prices are in USD.


Below, countries are sorted by descending "Savings after 300 BigMacs"


Rank Country Disposable Income BigMac Price Left after 300 BigMacs
1 Switzerland 6301.73 6.83  4,252.73
2 Australia 3780.69 4.81  2,337.69
3 UAE 3081.34 3.54  2,019.34
4 Norway 4215.43 7.76  1,887.43
5 United States 3258.85 4.80  1,818.85
6 Hong Kong 2495.86 2.43  1,766.86
7 Denmark 3269.62 5.15  1,724.62
8 Japan 2782.43 3.64  1,690.43
9 Singapore 2759.38 3.80  1,619.38
10 Ireland 2991.21 4.70  1,581.21
11 Netherlands 2937.58 4.64  1,545.58
12 Britain 2960.54 4.93  1,481.54
13 Sweden 3181.11 5.95  1,396.11
14 Germany 2851.85 4.94  1,369.85
15 Finland 2924.10 5.52  1,268.10
16 New Zealand 2693.05 4.94  1,211.05
17 Canada 2773.50 5.25  1,198.50
18 France 2761.99 5.25  1,186.99
19 Austria 2457.33 4.56  1,089.33
20 Belgium 2564.89 4.98  1,070.89
21 South Korea 2174.36 4.00  974.36
22 Saudi Arabia 1786.07 2.93  907.07
23 South Africa 1400.01 2.33  701.01
24 Italy 2117.76 5.18  563.76
25 Taiwan 1307.43 2.63  518.43
26 Israel 1874.63 5.13  335.63
27 Malaysia 979.60 2.41  256.60
28 Argentina 1018.58 2.57  247.58
29 Spain 1635.15 4.91  162.15
30 Poland 905.62 3.00  5.62
31 Czech Republic 1020.48 3.46 -17.52
32 India 452.11 1.75 -72.89
33 Russia 686.16 2.55 -78.84
34 China 731.14 2.73 -87.86
35 Portugal 1081.73 4.04 -130.27
36 Ukraine 357.71 1.63 -131.29
37 Chile 949.50 3.72 -166.50
38 Mexico 729.94 3.25 -245.06
39 Estonia 914.97 3.90 -255.03
40 Greece 953.44 4.11 -279.56
41 Lithuania 701.28 3.49 -345.72
42 Costa Rica 779.04 4.00 -420.96
43 Indonesia 304.25 2.43 -424.75
44 Thailand 502.78 3.12 -433.22
45 Egypt 264.33 2.37 -446.67
46 Sri Lanka 352.62 2.69 -454.38
47 Hungary 667.58 3.77 -463.42
48 Vietnam 334.60 2.83 -514.40
49 Turkey 756.06 4.42 -569.94
50 Peru 492.13 3.59 -584.87
51 Uruguay 862.60 4.92 -613.40
52 Pakistan 239.31 3.04 -672.69
53 Philippines 330.73 3.70 -779.27
54 Colombia 474.66 4.65 -920.34
55 Brazil 757.92 5.86 -1,000.08
56 Venezuela 564.76 6.82 -1,481.24


Another analysis might consider the number of BigMacs you can buy with your disposable monthly salary:


Rank Country Disposable Income BigMac Price How Many BigMacs?
1 Hong Kong 2495.86 2.43 1027.10
2 Switzerland 6301.73 6.83 922.65
3 UAE 3081.34 3.54 870.44
4 Australia 3780.69 4.81 786.01
5 Japan 2782.43 3.64 764.40
6 Singapore 2759.38 3.80 726.15
7 United States 3258.85 4.80 678.93
8 Ireland 2991.21 4.70 636.43
9 Denmark 3269.62 5.15 634.88
10 Netherlands 2937.58 4.64 633.10
11 Saudi Arabia 1786.07 2.93 609.58
12 South Africa 1400.01 2.33 600.86
13 Britain 2960.54 4.93 600.52
14 Germany 2851.85 4.94 577.30
15 New Zealand 2693.05 4.94 545.15
16 South Korea 2174.36 4.00 543.59
17 Norway 4215.43 7.76 543.23
18 Austria 2457.33 4.56 538.89
19 Sweden 3181.11 5.95 534.64
20 Finland 2924.10 5.52 529.73
21 Canada 2773.50 5.25 528.29
22 France 2761.99 5.25 526.09
23 Belgium 2564.89 4.98 515.04
24 Taiwan 1307.43 2.63 497.12
25 Italy 2117.76 5.18 408.83
26 Malaysia 979.60 2.41 406.47
27 Argentina 1018.58 2.57 396.33
28 Israel 1874.63 5.13 365.42
29 Spain 1635.15 4.91 333.02
30 Poland 905.62 3.00 301.87
31 Czech Republic 1020.48 3.46 294.94
32 Russia 686.16 2.55 269.08
33 China 731.14 2.73 267.82
34 Portugal 1081.73 4.04 267.75
35 India 452.11 1.75 258.35
36 Chile 949.50 3.72 255.24
37 Estonia 914.97 3.90 234.61
38 Greece 953.44 4.11 231.98
39 Mexico 729.94 3.25 224.60
40 Ukraine 357.71 1.63 219.45
41 Lithuania 701.28 3.49 200.94
42 Costa Rica 779.04 4.00 194.76
43 Hungary 667.58 3.77 177.08
44 Uruguay 862.60 4.92 175.33
45 Turkey 756.06 4.42 171.05
46 Thailand 502.78 3.12 161.15
47 Peru 492.13 3.59 137.08
48 Sri Lanka 352.62 2.69 131.09
49 Brazil 757.92 5.86 129.34
50 Indonesia 304.25 2.43 125.21
51 Vietnam 334.60 2.83 118.23
52 Egypt 264.33 2.37 111.53
53 Colombia 474.66 4.65 102.08
54 Philippines 330.73 3.70 89.39
55 Venezuela 564.76 6.82 82.81
56 Pakistan 239.31 3.04 78.72


Countries' both rankings next to each other:


Country "How Many BigMacs" Rank "Left after 300 BigMacs" Rank
Switzerland 2 1
Australia 4 2
UAE 3 3
Norway 17 4
United States 7 5
Hong Kong 1 6
Denmark 9 7
Japan 5 8
Singapore 6 9
Ireland 8 10
Netherlands 10 11
Britain 13 12
Sweden 19 13
Germany 14 14
Finland 20 15
New Zealand 15 16
Canada 21 17
France 22 18
Austria 18 19
Belgium 23 20
South Korea 16 21
Saudi Arabia 11 22
South Africa 12 23
Italy 25 24
Taiwan 24 25
Israel 28 26
Malaysia 26 27
Argentina 27 28
Spain 29 29
Poland 30 30
Czech Republic 31 31
India 35 32
Russia 32 33
China 33 34
Portugal 34 35
Ukraine 40 36
Chile 36 37
Mexico 39 38
Estonia 37 39
Greece 38 40
Lithuania 41 41
Costa Rica 42 42
Indonesia 50 43
Thailand 46 44
Egypt 52 45
Sri Lanka 48 46
Hungary 43 47
Vietnam 51 48
Turkey 45 49
Peru 47 50
Uruguay 44 51
Pakistan 56 52
Philippines 54 53
Colombia 53 54
Brazil 49 55
Venezuela 55 56