The 10 Happiest Countries

Once again, Panama leads the pack
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 27, 2015 4:43 PM CDT
In this photo provided by Maria Fisher, taken in August 2008, the beach at Marino Ballena National Park in southwest Costa Rica is seen.   (AP Photo/Maria Fisher)

(Newser) – US citizens who want a happier life may want to leave the country. The Gallup-Healthways Global Well-Being Index has issued its second annual list of country rankings, looking at 145 countries and how their residents fare in various "well-being elements." Those elements: a sense of purpose, social relationships, financial security, a sense of community, and physical health. The rankings are based on the percentage of people in each country thriving in three or more of the areas. The top 10 countries:

  1. Panama (53%)
  2. Costa Rica (47.6%)

  1. Puerto Rico (45.8%)
  2. Switzerland (39.4%)
  3. Belize (38.9%)
  4. Chile (38.7%)
  5. Denmark (37%)
  6. Guatemala (36.3%)
  7. Austria (35.6%)
  8. Mexico (35.6%)
The US sits at No. 23. Click for the complete list, or check out last year's rankings. (Read more happiest countries stories.)

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