George Ure and Gaye Levy/Activist Post
We seem to get a more or less, constant stream of mail from people who go “one step beyond prepping” and go so far as to actually leave and bug out of America.
George, for example, has plenty of readers, it turns out, in places like Ecuador and Chile, where lots of Americans are moving to extend their retirement incomes. But in some places, like Panama, where George’s brother-in-law is back from, it seems like the overseas boom in real estate has come to a screeching halt.
So we ask ourselves: does it make sense to leave America and move elsewhere for the long term?
What Your Money Buys
For people on fixed incomes, one starting point is to consider what things cost in the country that you are thinking of retiring to . . . or just moving to in order to escape the rat race of North America. The problem is sorting out truth from fiction about what things cost.
Fortunately, there is a widely recognized method of balancing things out using a system called “Purchasing Power Parity.” Wikipedia sums up the concept this way:
In economics, purchasing power parity (PPP) asks how much money would be needed to purchase the same goods and services in two countries, and uses that to calculate an implicit foreign exchange rate.
Using that PPP rate, an amount of money thus has the same purchasing power in different countries. Among other uses, PPP rates facilitate international comparisons of income, as market exchange rates are often volatile, are affected by political and financial factors that do not lead to immediate changes in income and tend to systematically understate the standard of living in poor countries, due to the Balassa–Samuelson effect.