The Biggest Entitlement Spenders In The World

In the U.S. debate on social spending and entitlements, it’s important to remember that we spend more than some and less than most.

In fact, we’re ninth from the bottom of the OECD‘s 34 listed countries in social spending as a share of the economy. 

Ireland is above us and Australia below.

Following is a list of the 14 greatest social spenders included in the OECD’s rankings.

This piece was amended on April 17, 2011.

#14 Luxembourg

Social spending as share of GDP: 20.6%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: -0.8%

Source: OECD

#13 Norway

Social spending as share of GDP: 20.8%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: 3.9%

Source: OECD

#12 Greece

Social spending as share of GDP: 21.3%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: 6.8%

Source: OECD

#11 Spain

Social spending as share of GDP: 21.6%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: 4.8%

Source: OECD

#10 Portugal

Social spending as share of GDP: 22.5%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: 12.5%

Source: OECD

#9 Hungary

Social spending as share of GDP: 23.1%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: 1.9%

Source: OECD

#8 Italy

Social spending as share of GDP: 24.9%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: 5.0%

Source: OECD

#7 Finland

Social spending as share of GDP: 24.9%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: 5.4%

Source: OECD

#6 Germany

Social spending as share of GDP: 25.2%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: 2.4%

Source: OECD

#5 Denmark

Social spending as share of GDP: 26.1%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: 1.3%

Source: OECD

#4 Belgium

Social spending as share of GDP: 26.3%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: 0.7%

Source: OECD

#3 Austria

Social spending as share of GDP: 26.4%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: 4.0%

Source: OECD

#2 Sweden

Social spending as share of GDP: 27.3%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: -0.6%

Source: OECD

#1 France

Social spending as share of GDP: 28.4%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: 6.1%

Source: OECD

BONUS: United States 25th out of 34

Social spending as share of GDP: 16.2%

Growth from 1982 to 2007: 2.3%

Source: OECD

That's who's being well taken care of, now who's working hardest

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