An Australian economist says that people can actually put a price on happiness and has come up with a "price list" of events in people's lives.
Paul Frijters claims he calculated a formula which delivers the monetary equivalent of the value of various milestones in life, reports The Telegraph.
AdvertisementThe expert, a professor at Queensland University of Technology, claims that, to men marriage is worth 18,000 pounds, but to women it's just 9,000 pounds.
However, when it comes to divorce, a devastated man would value it at 61,500 pounds, while a woman would be far less traumatised, feeling as though she had only lost 5,000 pounds.
According to Paul, the figures depict a lump sum a person would need to receive out of the blue in a bid to make him or her as happy as marriage would over a lifetime.
To reach the conclusion, Paul has tracked major life events of 10,000 people since 2001.
He said: "These are real people to whom unexpected things happen.
"They were not selected because these things would happen and because of that, we can accurately compare their happiness before and after."
In his study, Australians were asked to describe on a scale of 0 to 10 how satisfied they were with their lives.
The rating system helped Paul to put money values on the effects of happiness of major events such as marriage, divorce and illnesses.
He said: "Losing a loved one has a much bigger effect than gaining a loved one. There's a real asymmetry between life and death.
"This shouldn't surprise us. Human beings seem primed to notice losses more than gains."
Paul concluded that money had a greater effect on happiness than previously thought.
Marriage woman - 8, 726.25 pounds man - 17, 675.68 pounds
Birth of child woman - 4, 866.77 pounds man - 18, 236.39 pounds
Divorce woman - 4, 977.08 pounds (loss) man - 61, 116.46 pounds (loss)
Death of a loved one woman - 73, 204.86 pounds (loss) man - 350, 830.36 pounds (loss)
Illness woman - 28, 124.61 pounds (loss) man - 201, 264.68 pounds (loss)
Moving house woman - 1, 453.80 pounds (gain) man - 8, 947.11 pounds (loss) .
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