EU vs. USA: Thorough report from Sweden comparing the economies, with interesting results. "IF THE EU WERE A PART of the United States of America, would it belong to the richest or the poorest group of states? .. France, Italy and Germany have less per capita GDP than all but five of the states of the USA .. [Sweden], if it were a part of the USA, would rank as one of the very poorest states in that Union.. the American economy has been growing faster than the economies of many European countries in recent decades, not least those of countries like France, Germany and Sweden... This puts Europeans at a level of prosperity on par with states such as Arkansas, Mississippi and West Virginia. Only the miniscule country of Luxembourg has higher per capita GDP than the average state in the USA [and that is attributed to an influx of foreign capital]..
Per capita private consumption is far higher in the USA than in most European countries. In the USA the average person spends about $9,700 more on consumption annually, a difference of 77 per cent. The average American,
in other words, spends nearly twice as much (77 per cent more) on consumption as the average EU citizen. This is due to a higher level of GDP but also to taxation policy. Allowance for tax differences would reduce these big differences somewhat, but American consumption would still far outweigh its European counterpart."
Additional info found in an NYT article that constrasts these numbers with the common (faulty) perception of Scandinavian wealth. The biggest factor was the growth rates in the 1990s, with the US adding 2% more GDP every year than the EU. 11:22:45 PM