Minimum HK$1.5m needed to be happy in Hong Kong, poll finds

Survey reports that Hongkongers need HK$1.5m a year to find contentment

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 15 November, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 15 November, 2012, 10:15am

Hongkongers on average need to earn HK$1.5 million a year to be happy, ranking them third among 13 places in the world, according to a global survey by an investment company.

The poll of 5,000 people by Royal Skandia, of whom 500 were from Hong Kong, also found the city's women were more financially demanding than men.

Dubai topped the poll, with respondents there requiring HK$2.1 million year, compared with a global average of HK$1.2 million. The Gulf city was followed by Singapore with HK$1.8 million. Germany came last, with an average of only HK$664,830.

Britons think they need to earn HK$1 million a year to be happy, ranking them ninth.

The survey found that while only 17 per cent of men in Hong Kong said they needed more than HK$2 million a year to be content, the percentage for women was 23 per cent. Nearly half of the men said they would be happy with yearly incomes below HK$600,000, but only one third of the women felt comfortable with that number.

A HK$1.5 million yearly income would mean a monthly salary of HK$125,000. According to the Population Census last year, only 4.2 per cent of the working population earn more than HK$60,000 a month, the highest category in the report. Hongkongers on average earn HK$12,800 per month.

The survey also showed more than 80 per cent of Hongkongers believed a certain level of income could bring them happiness.

"It may be that the relative absence of a social security net combined with the very high cost of property and rising inflation are responsible for places like Hong Kong putting a higher value on income," said Michael Leeson, Royal Skandia's head of sales in Hong Kong and Northeast Asia.