Economist Arthur Okun: Top 15 Countries on the Misery Index

The global economic picture is fairly grim. Debt ridden Eurozone countries have seen unemployment driven high by austerity measures and economic stagnation. The civil unrest in the Mideast and North Africa stemmed in part from joblessness in the region. 

Meanwhile, the price of food and energy soars everywhere.

The so-called “misery index” conceived by economist Arthur Okun is calculated by adding together unemployment and inflation.

Doing this simple calculation, we found the most miserable countries in the world.

Note: We calculated figures for 81 countries that consistently report unemployment and CPI figures

#15 Argentina

#15 Argentina

Image: AP

Misery index score: 17.1%

CPI inflation: 9.7%

Unemployment: 7.4%

Source: Bloomberg


#14 Ireland

#14 Ireland

Misery index score: 17.5%

CPI inflation: 2.7%

Unemployment: 14.8%

Source: Bloomberg


#13 Latvia

#13 Latvia

Image: AP

Misery index score: 18.2%

CPI inflation: 5%

Unemployment: 13.2%

Source: Bloomberg


#12 Jordan

#12 Jordan

Image: AP

Misery index score: 18.3%

CPI inflation: 5.2%

Unemployment: 13.1%

Source: BloombergThe Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan


#11 Turkey

#11 Turkey

Image: AP

Misery index score: 18.67%

CPI inflation: 7.17%

Unemployment: 11.5%

Source: Bloomberg


#10 Pakistan

#10 Pakistan

Misery index score: 18.73%

CPI inflation: 13.23%

Unemployment: 5.5%

Source: Bloomberg


#9 Oman

Misery index score: 19.1%

CPI inflation: 4.1%

Unemployment: 15%

Source: Bloomberg, CBS


#8 Greece

#8 Greece

Image: ap

Misery index score: 19.49%

CPI inflation: 3.29%

Unemployment: 16.2%

Source: Bloomberg


#7 India

#7 India

Image: jpereira_net via Flickr

Misery index score: 20.21%

CPI inflation: 9.41%

Unemployment: 10.8%

Source: Bloomberg


#6 Lithuania

#6 Lithuania

Image: AP

Misery index score: 22.2%

CPI inflation: 5%

Unemployment: 17.2%

Source: Bloomberg


#5 Egypt

#5 Egypt

Image: ap

Misery index score: 23.8%

CPI inflation: 11.9%

Unemployment: 11.9%

Source: Bloomberg, Yahoo! News


#4 Spain

#4 Spain

Image: AP

Misery index score: 24.2%

CPI inflation: 3.5%

Unemployment: 20.7%

Source: Bloomberg


#3 Vietnam

#3 Vietnam

Misery index score: 24.38%

CPI inflation: 19.78%

Unemployment: 4.6%

Source: Bloomberg


#2 South Africa

Misery index score: 27.4%

CPI inflation: 4.2%

Unemployment: 23.2%

Source: Bloomberg


#1 Venezuela

#1 Venezuela

Image: AP

Misery index score: 32.9%

CPI inflation: 24.8%

Unemployment: 8.1%

Source: Bloomberg

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