Norway has been crowned the most prosperous country in the world for the fifth year running.
But the U.S. has dropped out of the Legatum Prosperity Index’s top ten for the first time to 12th position.
According to the annual survey, which benchmarks 142 countries worldwide, the UK has continued to lag, retaining its place 13th in the list.
Scandinavian countries have continued to dominate the top of the global index, which takes measurements from across eight categories: economy, education, entrepreneurship & opportunity, governance, health, personal freedom, safety & security and social capital.
Norway, Denmark and Sweden are ranked first, second and third place respectively.
In Europe, overall prosperity has risen, with the Netherlands, Ireland and Germany climbing the rankings into eighth, tenth and 14th position.
However, more than two thirds of European countries have seen their Economy score fall in the index since 2009 as economic woes sweep across the region.
A new generation of Asian ‘Tiger Cub’ countries has emerged, with Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia all performing well.
They are edging closer to Hong Kong, Singapore and Taiwan, which all sit in the top 25 countries.
Jeffrey Gedmin, president and chief executive of the Legatum Institute, said: ‘The Legatum Prosperity Index allows us to paint a comprehensive picture of what makes a country truly successful.
‘It encompassing traditional measures of material wealth, as well as capturing citizens’ sense of wellbeing – from how safe they feel, to their perceived personal freedom. GDP alone can never offer a complete view of prosperity.
‘We believe that by measuring the quality of education, healthcare, social capital and opportunity, our Prosperity Index gives the clearest view of how countries are prospering today and how they are likely to prosper in the future.’
1 – Norway 2 – Denmark 3 – Sweden 4 – Australia 5 – New Zealand 6 – Canada 7 – Finland 8 – Netherlands 9 – Switzerland 10 – Ireland 11 – Luxembourg 12 – U.S. 13 – UK 14 – Germany 15 – Iceland 16 – Austria 17 – Belgium 18 – Hong Kong 19 – Singapore 20 – Taiwan 21 – France 22 – Japan 23 – Spain 24 – Slovenia 25 – Malta