U.S. Cities Best in World for Making a Living According to Report

San Francisco is the world’s best city in terms of making a living, according to an annual analysis conducted by Deutsche Bank. The firm’s “Mapping the World’s Prices 2019” report, which analyzes cities the world over and ranks them for salary and disposable income after rent, placed the Golden City first. San Francisco had previously placed 7th and 21st on both lists.

“The rapid growth of the U.S. tech sector is helping San Fran beat traditional capital cities for incomes,” Deutsche Bank’s report, written by Jim Reid, Craig Nicol and Henry Allen, states.

“Whilst its cost of living is increasing each year and rising up the cost rankings on most measures we cover, it still lags major global capitals. In terms of 2-bed rents however, it is only behind Hong Kong,” it adds.

The U.S. dominated the top spots on the list with New York, Boston and Chicago coming in third, fourth and fifth, respectively. Zurich, previously ranked number one came in second this year.

Much of the shift in U.S. cities is due to the strong performance of the dollar. Over the past 5 years the dollar has appreciated 20% against the Euro, and 23% against the British Pound.

It’s not all bad news for European cities, however. Zurich retains its top ranking for quality of life and is near the top of rankings in terms of cost of goods and services.

It also however remains the most expensive city to go on a date in.

“Zurich is again the place to find a long-term partner early in life and persuade them to stay at home at night, eat in, watch the telly and save your high disposable income or risk seeing it erode away on your partner,” the report states.

Photo by Supercarwaar via Wikimedia Commons

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San Francisco U.S.’ Billionaire Capital

San Francisco has the most billionaires, per capita, than any city in the U.S. according to a new study conducted by data firm Wealth-X. There is roughly one billionaire for every 11,600 people in the major city closest to tech-hub silicon valley.

Globally, the population of billionaires decreased by 5% to about 2,600 individuals. Total wealth of the world’s billionaires declined as well, by 7% to about $8.6 trillion. Much of the drop off took place in Asia due to the economic slowdown in China.

The net worth of U.S. billionaires dropped as well, by 5%, but the overall number of U.S. billionaires increased by 4%.

New York City ranks second in terms of billionaire-frequency. There is one ten-figure individual for every 81,000 people in New York.

The annual census conducted by Wealth-X, which tracks the mega-wealthy, also paints a broader picture of who the world’s billionaires are. For example:

• 88% of the world’s billionaires are men.
• The age of the average billionaire is 65.
• 56% of billionaires are self-made – meaning their vast wealth was not inherited.

Photo by Noahnmf via Wikimedia Commons

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San Francisco to Ban Mechanized Scooters from City Streets

San Francisco will be halting a popular shared-scooter program according to city officials, while the city works some kinks out of the program and issues new permits.

In March, ride-sharing companies Bird, Lime and Spin all unceremoniously released hundreds of mechanized scooters onto San Francisco streets. Since then the city has received 1,800 complaints about abandoned scooters blocking pathways, doorways and bus stops, as well as complaints about riders riding on sidewalks.

Five hundred scooters have been confiscated by the S.F. Department of Public Works according to the agency’s director, Mohammed Nuru. Now the city has issued multiple cease-and-desist letter to companies for the remaining scooters.

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency has established a 12-month pilot program under which 1,250 scooters would be allowed to be deployed for six months by a permit-holding company. Depending on its performance during those first six month, a company may deploy an additional 1,250 scooters for a total of 2,500 through 12 months. A firm’s performance is judged on how well they meet city standards.

Under the program companies must satisfy certain requirements laid out by the city. These include enforcing safety measures like the wearing of helmets and the prevention of the riding on sidewalks.

Companies would have to show that they’re safeguarding user information, offer a low-income plan, encourage deployment in under-served communities and insure their riders.

Permit-holding companies would also have to address improper parking, which may include locking scooters to docking stations. Because they can be locked/unlocked through an app on a smartphone, scooters are often abandoned on sidewalks.

The cost of a permit includes a $5,000 application fee and a $25,000 annual fee. Companies would also have to create a $10,000 endowment to cover costs associated with property repair and maintenance for the city.

“San Francisco supports transportation innovation, but it cannot come at the price of public safety,” S.F. City Attorney Dennis Herrera wrote in a statement. “This permit program represents a thoughtful, coordinated and effective approach to ensure that San Francisco strikes the right balance. We can have innovation, but it must keep our sidewalks safe and accessible for all pedestrians. We can have convenience, but it can’t sacrifice privacy and equity along the way.”

“This program is a strong step forward. It provides the framework to ensure that companies operating in the public right of way are doing so lawfully and are accountable for their products.”

Firms will have until June 4 to remove scooters from streets. If they don’t, the scooters can be impounded and companies may face fines of up to $100 per scooter.

Photo by the SFMTA

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