(Update at 9.00am on 15 Frbruary 2011: Headline rewritten, and changes made in text. “kbs” pointed out (see comments) that I misread the 2001 figures. Apologies for being daft. Will try not to be daft again.)
In 2001, it was ranked 97th. The survey uses prices of goods and services such as food, transportation, housing, utilities, private schools and domestic help to calculate scores for each city, using New York as its base with a score of 100. To be fair, most S’poreans do not rent homes in prime districts or send their children to private schools.
And the strength of S$ in 2011 can distort figures. A kilo of bread would have cost US$2.86 in 2010, according to the Economist’s data, but last year cost US$3.19 – an 11% increase. But, 6% of this is due to weakening US$. In S$, the price of bread would have gone up 5%.
88 places in 10 years being number 9 is not shumething to crow about because
If we look at the data for the last 10 years, for example, the income of Singapore citizens at the 20th percentile level, grew by only 25%, from $1,200 in 2001 to $1,500 in 2011 (excluding employer CPF contributions).
In real terms, I estimate the annualized growth to be about 0.2%.
This is a far cry from the 2.2% real annualized growth for the last five years (including employer CPF contributions).
And the “new poor” continue to face the triple whammy of high living costs, low wages & purchasing power.