Wall Street Journal Tallies The Most Miserable U.S. Cities

The Wall Street Journal has created a new "misery index." The original misery index was created by economist Arthur Okun and, as Planet Money explains, it was often cited by Jimmy Carter.

That original index measured misery by adding the unemployment rate to the inflation rate. Right now that's 11.01 as of February. It hit it's high of 21.98 in June of 1980.

That's a national index and Wall Street Journal wanted to gauge misery locally: So they decided to look at local unemployment rate, the increase in gas prices and the change in home values as their guide to misery. Boston, Cleveland and New York landed the top least miserable spots. Phoenix, Portland, Seattle, Minneapolis and Los Angeles were the top five most miserable cities. Head to the Wall Street Journal for a full list and an interactive map.



Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

NPR thanks our sponsors

Become an NPR sponsor

Support comes from