$75K is ‘sweet spot’ for money, happiness

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, September 7, 2010

WASHINGTON (AP) — They say money can’t buy happiness. They’re wrong.

At least up to a point.

People’s emotional well-being – happiness – increases along with their income up to about $75,000, researchers report in Tuesday’s edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

For folks making less than that, said Angus Deaton, an economist at the Center for Health and Wellbeing at Princeton University, “Stuff is so in your face it’s hard to be happy. It interferes with your enjoyment.”

Deaton and Daniel Kahneman reviewed surveys of 450,000 Americans conducted in 2008 and 2009 for the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index that included questions on people’s day-to-day happiness and their overall life satisfaction.