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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

UBS study on wages and domestic purchasing power of 73 world cities - An embarrassment for Singapore?

The political website, Temasek Review has a summary of a UBS study of 73 cities round the world that shows that despite being a city with one of the highest GDP per capita in the world, the average SG person has much lower wages and low purchasing power - the lowest among the 4 Asian Tigers despite having the highest GDP per capita. The actual report is here:  http://www.ubs.com/1/e/media_overview/media_global/releases?newsId=170250   and it makes very interesting read. I have some doubts on the validity of the choice of the basket of goods.  For instance, rental is an important cost component in the survey but most Singaporeans buy their property, not renting.  Hence the high rental costs here may not be that relevant.  Nevertheless, the report highlights issues for us to examine and reflect further.
 
Source: temasekreview.com
The worldwide study conducted and released by UBS lately, titled "Price and Earnings 2009″ has some unflattering results for Singapore. (download the study here)...
 
This is Part 2 of the Temasek Review analysis of the UBS report. It makes a very unflattering comparison between Russia and SG. I don't agree with its conclusions and yet, one finds it hard to refute some of the data:
 
Source: temasekreview.com
When Mr Goh Chok Tong became the second Prime Minister of Singapore in the 1990s, he promised Singaporeans that we will attain the "Swiss standard of living" within a decade.
 

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