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What People Buy on $2/day - Atlantic Magazine

But what good is $5 per day, the new global mode? At that level, aren't people too poor to buy $100 appliances? I'm indebted to the Atlantic magazine for printing this survey (search for "what the poor own" in the actual link, not from Atlantic, but the London School of Economics). Somebody got curious what people on $2/day buy when they have minimal food, clothing, and shelter needs met. It turns out that 70% of the rural $2/day people of the Ivory Coast have a radio. It's 80% of urban poor in Peru, and 62% of them have a TV as well. Radios, TVs and bicycles were the most popular purchases. Bicycles can be crucial to a job, of course, but people badly want information and entertainment as well - and education for their children more than anything.

© Roy Brander, P.Eng 2008