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Trading Up the Happiness Ladder

Barbara Dluhosch () and Daniel Horgos
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Barbara Dluhosch: Helmut Schmidt University, Hamburg, Postal: Helmut Schmidt University Hamburg – University FAF Hamburg, Department of Economics, Holstenhofweg 85, 22043 Hamburg, Germany

No 115/2012, Working Paper from Helmut Schmidt University, Hamburg

Abstract: How globalization affects happiness is highly disputed. Several studies use an index that amalgamates globalization’s different dimensions into a single variable. Unlike previous studies and in order to better illuminate its facets, we adopt a disaggregated perspective on trade (policy) data. Distinguishing actual trade flows and the option value of trade, we find the former to slightly depress happiness, the latter to significantly promote happiness. Segmentation of WVS-data shows that the positive connotation is concentrated in low-income countries still in the process of climbing the income ladder, thus backing the notion of a shift in values.

Keywords: Happiness; Well-Being; International Trade (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: F13 I31 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 20 pages
Date: 2012-03-01
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