January 12, 2017
Does your weekly shopping list include alcohol, tobacco and drugs?
The folks at Bloomberg Index were curious what folks around the world would pay for such a weekly habit. They compared the prices in more than 100 countries of a shopping basket of vice. According to Bloomberg:
Here is what we put in the basket: a pack of cigarettes, most popular and premium brands; a bottle of alcoholic beverages, including beer, wine and spirits; a gram of amphetamine-type stimulants, including amphetamine, methamphetamine and/or ecstasy; a gram of cannabis, including marijuana herb, hashish resin and/or cannabis oil; a gram of cocaine, regardless of salts, paste or base forms; a gram of opioids, including heroin and/or opium.
They looked at the cost, relative to the cost in the United States, where a consumer would pay nearly $400 weekly, about a third of average weekly income.
The United States finished 17th on the index of affordability. Landing atop the index was tiny Luxembourg, where the $259 basket cost was countered by the $2,035 average weekly income.
More of a beach person? If you can get by on a weekly income of $470 a week then the Bahamas is your place, where you can score your basket (to help forget the bottom line on your paycheck) for just $75.20. That's cheap enough to land at #3 on the index.
The cheapest place to stock that basket? The African nation of Congo, where you can purchase a whole lotta vice for just $19.60 week, but it will cost a little more than half the average weekly salary.
For the full index and to find out which country (where cigarettes are $20-plus a pack) joined Russia as the place you definitely cannot afford to smoke, drink and pop pills, check out the Bloomberg story.