22nd May 2012 12:24pm | By Laura Chubb
Australia is the happiest rich country in the world, according to a new study.
Aus came out ahead of Norway and the US in the annual Better Life Index, compiled by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
Having dodged the economic woes currently dogging Europe, the OECD survey ranked Australia based on categories including housing, jobs, education, health, environment and work-life balance.
Using data from the United Nations, governments and other sources, the OECD attributed Australia's success largely to its strong economic performance.
High demand for iron ore and coal exports means Australia's unemployment rate was 4.9 percent in April, compared with 10.9 per cent in Europe and 8.1 per cent in the US. More than 72 per cent of the working-age population in the country is employed, compared with the OECD average of 66 per cent.
In addition, 85 per cent of Australians described their health as good, which was well above the OECD average of 70 per cent.
It also seems that Aussie blokes are truly men of the 21st century - the research found that Australian men spend nearly three hours every day cooking, cleaning or caring - one of the highest scores across the OECD's 34 member countries and ahead of men in the US, Germany and Canada.