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The happiest countries and happiest U.S. states tend to have the highest suicide rates, according to research from the UK’s University of Warwick, Hamilton College in New York and the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.The new research paper titled “Dark Contrasts: The Paradox of High Rates of Suicide in Happy Places” has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization. It uses U.S. and international data, which included first-time comparisons of a newly available random sample of 1.3 million Americans, and another on suicide decisions among an independent random sample of approximately 1 million Americans.
The research confirmed a little known and seemingly puzzling fact: many happy countries have unusually high rates of suicide. This observation has been made from time to time about individual nations, especially in the case of Denmark.