Luxembourgers enjoy one of the highest standards of living in the world. The UN Human Development Report 2000 ranks Luxembourg number 17 in the world in its human development index. Luxembourg has the world's highest per capita income of US$46,591 per person. (Figured at purchasing power parity , Luxembourg still led the world with a per capita income in 2000 of US$36,400.) This figure reflects the growth in the nation's economy, as the nation has overtaken the economies of Japan and Switzerland since 1990.
Low unemployment and the need for workers have prevented poverty. Generous social benefits also contribute to this healthy situation. Laws prohibit discrimination against women, ethnic minorities, and people with disabilities, and women enjoy equal rights, including property rights, with men. However, there are differences in pay because of gender, with women often earning between 9 and 25 percent less than men in comparable jobs. Companies with more than 25 employees have a quota for hiring the disabled. According to the U.S. State Department's Country Reports on Human Rights Practices,
|Distribution of Income or Consumption by Percentage Share: Luxembourg|
|Survey year: 1994|
|Note: This information refers to income shares by percentiles of the population and is ranked by per capita income.|
|SOURCE: 2000 World Development Indicators [CD-ROM].|
|Household Consumption in PPP Terms|
|Country||All Food||Clothing and footwear||Fuel and power a||Health care b||Education b||Transport & Communications||Other|
|Data represent percentage of consumption in PPP terms.|
|a Excludes energy used for transport.|
|b Includes government and private expenditures.|
|SOURCE: World Bank. World Development Indicators 2000.|
2000: Luxembourg, the government pays subsidies to companies that construct "disabled-friendly" buildings. The government also provides support for programs that integrate foreign residents into the mainstream of society.
Luxembourg has a first-rate education system and a literacy rate of 100 percent. School is mandatory until the age of 16, although students may continue their education in post-secondary schools (with some government financial support). The well-educated workforce of the nation has contributed to its attractiveness to foreign companies and investors.