|English: boat quay Singapore skyline cbd marina bay sands clarke quay esplanade floating platform city hall supreme court 2011 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
All comparisons in the Mercer Cost of Living survey were assessed against a base currency and city i.e. the US dollar and New York City. According to data from the Monetary Authority of Singapore, the Singapore dollar has appreciated against the US dollar between January 2008 and May 2012. In January 2008, the Singapore dollar traded approximately S$1.42:US$1.00. However, in January 2011 through May 2012, it consistently valued higher, averaging S$1.28:US$1.00. The appreciation of the Singapore dollar against the US dollar especially after January 2011 then indicates why the Republic's cost of living supercedes that of the Big Apple.
Furthermore, amidst sluggish economic growth in the United States and Eurozone, entrepreneurs, professionals and investors have looked to high-potential Asian cities such as Singapore, Yangon and Shenzhen to open a company or seize business opportunities. The fact that these cities have moved up the scale and are fast displacing traditionally expensive European or US cities in Mercer's list reflects that more business activities are gravitating towards them. This phenomenon in turn opens up new consumer markets and pushes up living costs as demand for niche accommodation, transportation and other indicators correspondingly increase.
|English: Overview of Singapore's financial district (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|