Do countries become less religious as they get richer?

A study recently published by the Pew Research Center suggests that people in richer countries tend to be less religious and less optimistic than those in poorer countries. The United States, however, is a notable outlier.

Measured by gross domestic product per capita, the US was wealthiest nation surveyed. According to Pew’s survey, 54 percent of Americans said religion was very important in their lives –  more than double the percentage in the next three wealthiest economies: Canada (24 percent), Australia (21 percent) and Germany (21 percent).

According to Pew, the United States is also unlike similarly wealthy countries in that Americans put a greater emphasis on the correlation between belief in God and morality. Also, people in the U.S. also tend to be more optimistic than other wealthy nations, and on any given day are more likely to say they are having a particularly good day than are people in other wealthy countries. READ MORE.

Graphic credit Pew Research Center