Cost of daily necessities

Average income around the world

The worldwide highest income is earned in Monaco. The smallest budget per capita exists in Somalia. In our comparison over 69 countries, the USA comes th with an average income of USD.

The average income is calculated by gross national income and population. On dividing all annual incomes and profits by the amount of the countrie's population, it will show the average income per capita. Included in this amount are all salaries and wages but also other unearned income on investments or capital gain.

The average gross annual wage per full-time employee in the USA was $69,392 in 2020, or around $5,783 per month ($3,789/year more than in the previous year).
Average income by country
RankCountryAvg. income per yearAvg. income per month
1Monaco186,080 $15,507 $
2Luxembourg73,500 $6,125 $
3Iceland62,420 $5,202 $
4Belgium45,180 $3,765 $
5New Zealand41,330 $3,444 $
6Andorra40,650 $3,388 $
7France39,400 $3,283 $
8Kuwait36,290 $3,024 $
9South Korea32,860 $2,738 $
10Saint Martin27,680 $2,307 $
11Slovenia24,800 $2,067 $
12Estonia23,370 $1,948 $
13Czechia22,070 $1,839 $
14Portugal22,000 $1,833 $
15Puerto Rico21,740 $1,812 $
16Palau16,500 $1,375 $
17French Polynesia15,760 $1,313 $
18Trinidad and Tobago15,410 $1,284 $
19Barbados14,460 $1,205 $
20Antigua and Barbuda14,250 $1,188 $
21New Caledonia14,020 $1,168 $
22Virgin Islands13,930 $1,161 $
23China10,610 $884 $
24Mauritius10,230 $853 $
25Bulgaria9,540 $795 $
26Saint Lucia8,790 $733 $
27Grenada8,740 $728 $
28Montenegro7,900 $658 $
29Cuba7,480 $623 $
30Serbia7,400 $617 $
31Saint Vincent and the Grenadines7,340 $612 $
32Belarus6,330 $528 $
33Bosnia and Herzegovina6,090 $508 $
34Peru6,010 $501 $
35Ecuador5,530 $461 $
36Suriname5,510 $459 $
37South Africa5,410 $451 $
38Marshall Islands5,010 $418 $
39Jamaica4,620 $385 $
40Guatemala4,490 $374 $
41Azerbaijan4,450 $371 $
42Jordan4,310 $359 $
43Georgia4,290 $358 $
44Samoa4,070 $339 $
45Micronesia4,010 $334 $
46Indonesia3,870 $323 $
47Djibouti3,320 $277 $
48Iran2,870 $239 $
49Vanuatu2,780 $232 $
50Ghana2,230 $186 $
51Syria1,820 $152 $
52Kenya1,760 $147 $
53Uzbekistan1,670 $139 $
54Cameroon1,500 $125 $
55Cambodia1,490 $124 $
56Comoros1,450 $121 $
57Pakistan1,280 $107 $
58Tanzania1,080 $90 $
59Tajikistan1,060 $88 $
60Togo920 $77 $
61Mali830 $69 $
62Burkina Faso790 $66 $
63Guinea-Bissau760 $63 $
64Sudan650 $54 $
65Central Africa510 $43 $
66Afghanistan500 $42 $
67Sierra Leone490 $41 $
68Madagascar480 $40 $
69Somalia310 $26 $

Official data is published by several organisations like World Bank, International Monetary Fund or the OECD on a regular basis. Unfortunately there are no standardized procedures to adjust inflation, currency fluctuations or real purchase power. Thats why each institution has its own ranking and varying results.

The above list is therefore calculated according to the Atlas method from the quotient of the gross national income (formerly also called "gross national product") and the population of the country. For both figures, we take the last official numbers, which are usually those of the previous year. For the vast majority of countries, the above table is based on information from the year 2020. In some countries, however, these starting figures are not regularly collected or published and may be older or official estimates of the institutions mentioned above.

Surviving with 26 USD per month?

Cost of daily necessities The lower end of the table clearly shows that countries like the US or Australia are doing pretty well. Almost all countries with a remarkably low income are also developing countries with unstable political and economic conditions. The figures are quite correct in content, but also reflect only what is actually recorded by the official side. Anyone who does not register his trade or works illicit is never found or prosecuted in many countries. Illicit services and sales are not included in government statistics either. And that in turn reduces gross national income. Such numbers are always to be handled with cautiousness.

Difference between salaries and income

The salary or wage is paid to a worker or employee for his work in a employment. A self-employed person therefore has neither wages nor salary, but nevertheless an income. Also, workers or employees may have an additional income to their salary. This may include income from capital gains (including securities or interest) or leases.

The income of a person is therefore the sum of all of his earnings. At a first glance, that may sound somewhat inaccurate in a country comparison, as companies also generate an income. Regardless of whether this is a small tailoring around the corner or a stock-quoted enterprise, this company is also owned by individuals again. Therefor the income of the owners increases to the same extent as the income of their companies.

Gross national income

The income is always attributed to the domestic population. These are people who live predominantly in the respective country. They do not necessarily have to have the same citizenship, the habitual residence is sufficient. Also included in the gross national income are any earnings generated by these residents in another country. If a Mexican worker earns his money in the US during the day, but lives in Mexico, his income counts to Mexico. If he actually lives in the US for at least 6 months a year, he becomes a fiscal resident within the USA and his income counts there.
Comparison: Cost of livingCost of living in a global comparisonRanking of international living costs from 112 countries compared to the US
unemployment rates worldwideUnemployment rates by countryInternational comparison of the unemployment figures of 72 countries worldwide
tax havensList of the world's most notorious tax havensTax havens magically attract money and hide it from the tax authorities. Even in the middle of Europe and the USA.