Previous Rank: 2
Non-Mortgage Debt as % of Annual Income: 28.19%
Unemployment Rate: 6.7%
Foreclosure Rate (1 foreclosure per # of households): 681
Happiness Index Value: 17
Iowa maintains its position as the second most fiscally happy state in the nation and they could be poised to take the top spot.
The Des Moines Register reports, “Two areas of the economy that led Iowa out of the 2001 recession are starting to show signs of strength, a new report showed Monday. Manufacturing, an industry hard hit in the lingering recession, posted improvement in September’s Iowa Leading Indicators Index … Residential building permits also climbed in September over August.”
That sounds great and all, but I still wondered how they were measuring the happy and can you really trust a test that puts Nebraska at number 1? Like any reasonable person I went to Wikipedia. There it is. Gross National Happiness. Have you heard of such a thing? Then I found this OTHER strange site. And here's some sort of dissertation on measuring happiness. And the National Bureau of Economic Research is out there studying our happiness.
America, do you know that as a whole we aren't the most chipper people on the planet? Don't we want to be the best at everything? We need to get happier! We're at 150 internationally.
I'm pretty happy though so I think there's a strong possibility that this test is 100 percent accurate. No one asked me how happy I was, but maybe they could tell just by looking at me. Someone should invent a facial expression barometer and compare the results to the above findings. I wonder if the amount of smiles would be in direction proportion to the lack of foreclosures.