U.S. is 17th in happiness

Danish supporters celebrating a rowing event.

This final note on the way out, in which I'm sorry to have to tell you that we as a country are a lot less happy that we were a year ago.

The United Nations is out with its second annual World Happiness Report, which -- simple though it might sound -- is dedicated to the proposition that quality of life ought to be measured just like gross domestic product, or other leading economic indicators.

Anyway, we come in at number 17, down from 11 last year. Denmark took the top slot, with Norway, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Sweden rounding up the quintet of the world's most content countries.

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Kai Ryssdal is the host and senior editor of Marketplace, the most widely heard program on business and the economy in the country.


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