The world's "richest, healthiest, happiest, and most prosperous countries" have just been ranked by Legatum Institute today, according to Business Insider. Their 12th annual global Prosperity Index looks at over 100 different factors and ranks countries around the world based on the most "prosperous". 

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Canada has made it to the top of the list, beating out dozens of other countries. Canada was ranked the 8th most prosperous country in the whole world. In comparison, neighbouring country United States fell behind Canada, ranking 17th. 

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Canada improved from its spot from the previous year, ranking 11th in 2017 and 8th in 2018. "Canada improved in all pillars except Social Capital," read the report. "Canada overtook New Zealand to take the top spot for Personal Freedom this year, whereas the US sits at 28th". 

This year, the United States continued to hold its ranking of 17th most prosperous in the world. It ranked highest of all countries for the sub-category of Business Environment. The country also ranked in the top for three different sub-categories.

Which country took the top spot for most prosperous in the world? That would be Norway, which also ranked highest for Safety and Security. Coming in second was New Zealand and third was Finland. 

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So what does it mean to be prosperous, based on this report? It doesn't mean just being wealthy. The CEO of the Legatum Institute wrote in the report, "A nation is prosperous when it has an open economy, inclusive society, strong institutions and empowered people who are healthy, educated and safe. This leads to higher levels of wellbeing". 

The Prosperity Index looks at nine subindexes to determine prosperity: economic quality, business environment, governance, personal freedom, social capital, safety and security, education, health, and natural environment.

To find out more about the 12th annual global Prosperity Index, you can read the full report

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