The Big Mac index has been used to compare prices and earnings in different countries since 1970 has been brought into the 21st century. UBS has added an iPod index to its latest tri-annual report.
Employees have to work a globbal average of 37 minutes to earn enough to pay for a Big Mac, 22 minutes for a kilo of rice and 25 minutes for a kilo of bread.
In Tokyo and North American and Western European cities it takes from 12 to nearly 20 minutes. But the average wage earner in Nairobi has to work for more than 2.5 hours to buy the same hamburger. The average wage earner in Auckland could buy a Big Mac after working 19 minutes.
It takes the average wage-earner in Zurich and New York can nine hours to earn enough to buy an iPod nano. In Mumbai the average wager earner needs to work for 20 nine hour days – to purchase the same thing. The average wage earner in Auckland has to work 16 hours to buy a nano.
The study also found that Oslo, Zurich and Copenhagen are the most expensive of the 73 cities studied. People on Copenhagen, Zurich, Geneva and New York had the highest gross earnings.
The lowest incomes in Europe are in the Bulgarian city of Sofia and Romania’s capital Bucharest. Wage levels there are comparable with those in Colombia and Thailand.
South American and African cities are the only ones with lower average wages than those of Eastern Europe. This makes it easy to understand the two-way economic traffic of globalization: jobs go east while workers emigrate to the West.
. . . The lowest average wages are still found in the Indian cities of Delhi and Mumbai, and in Jakarta, Indonesia, and Manila, the Philippines.
When tax was taken in to consideration workers in Zurich still have the most purchasing power. People in Sydney, Luxembourg, Dublin and Miami come next. Wage earners in Jakarta, Nairobi, Manila and Mumbai have the least purchasing power from net wages.
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