Economic Indicators for Analysing Standards of Living

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Professional Higher Education Bachelor's Programme
“European business Studies”

Course paper in Economics

Economic indicators for analysis of living standards in Latvia and Scandinavian countries – Sweden and Norway

Author: Yevgeniya Grygorchuk
Group D1A2

Supervisor: A.Petrovs

Riga, Month 2009

Introduction4
Topic relevance4
Course paper aim4
Course paper tasks4
1Theoretical basis5
1.1Definition of the term “living standards”5
1.2Factors that influence an increase in living standards5
1.3Economic indicators for analysis of living standards6
1.3.1GDP per capita6
1.3.2Economic Growth and living standards6
1.3.3Government expenditures7
1.3.4Exports and imports7
1.3.5Leisure7
1.4Countries’ profiles in brief8
1.4.1Norway8
1.4.2Sweden9
1.4.3Latvia9
2Practical part10
2.1Real GDP per capita10
2.1.1Sweden.10
2.1.2Latvia10
2.1.3Norway11
2.2Government expenditures11
2.2.1Norway11
2.2.2Sweden12
2.2.3Latvia12
2.3Economic growth13
2.3.1Norway13
2.3.2Sweden13
2.3.3Latvia13
2.4Exports and imports14
2.4.1Norway14
2.4.2Sweden14
2.4.3Latvia15
2.5Leisure15
2.5.1Norway15
2.5.2Sweden16
2.5.3Latvia16
2.6Cost of living and annual per capita income17
2.6.1Norway17
2.6.2Sweden17
2.6.3Latvia18
2.7Population18
2.7.1Norway18
2.7.2Sweden19
2.7.3Latvia19
3CONCLUSION21
4RECOMMENDATIONS22
References23
*

* Introduction
* Topic relevance
Deep knowledge of economic indicators for analysis of living standards gives an opportunity to impartially evaluate and compare living standards in different countries such as Latvia, Norway and Sweden and suggest ways of improvements for Latvia in order to achieve high level. Nowadays, in the period of the world economic crisis Latvia by many indicators is occupying a leading place of low living standards among European Union countries. However, Scandinavian countries are recognized as the most attractive to live, work and study in. These countries serve as a good example for Latvia for imitation in order to provide its population with better living standards. * Course paper aim

The intention of this report is to make a careful study of economic indicators that are used for thorough analysis of living standards in Latvia and the Scandinavian countries and find out how they reflect living standards in the countries. * Course paper tasks

* Identify what is meant by “living standards” and which economic indicators are used for analysis of living standards in the given countries * Determine how economic indicators reflect a level of living standards * Examine their numerical value in each country

* Using examples of the Scandinavian countries make suggestions for possible improvement for Latvia in order to achieve high living standards.

Theoretical basis

What is usually meant by ‘living standards’? Which economic indicators are used by statisticians and experts in the area of economics, demography and politics to define living standards in a country? What affects standards of living? What factors do favour an increase of living standards? These and many others questions will be thoroughly examined in the theoretical part and obtained results will be used to analyse living standards in Latvia and Scandinavian countries – Norway and Sweden. Definition of the term “living standards”

Living standards of population may simply be defined as a scope of living conditions in accordance with reached level of country’s economic advancement. It concerns the physical circumstances in which an individual, a group or a nation live; the goods, services and luxuries they are able to consume; and the economic resources they have access to. In short standard of living reflects financial health of the population and its level of material...
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