The annual “Prices and Earnings“ study by Swiss bank UBS shows the effects of currency shifts and compares prices and earnings in 73 cities worldwide for 122 goods and services.
After Oslo, Zürich and Geneva come Copenhagen, Stockholm and Tokyo after the study was updated to reflect the present currency situation.
The highest salaries are earned in Zürich, Geneva and Copenhagen. However, Zürich, Sydney and Luxembourg have the greatest domestic purchasing power based on their net wages, according to the study:
"Comparing domestic prices for a universal basket of goods against the domestic wage level allows us to examine the difference in relative purchasing power," said UBS.
"Therefore people working in Zürich, who lead our index, can afford the most domestically in relation to the other cities surveyed."
American cities cost lower than in previous years, UBS said, with New York slipping from sixth to 14th most expensive location since 2010.
UBS publishes an in-depth study on prices and earnings every three years, updating it annually. In 2010, and again this year, UBS researchers adjusted the most important indices from the 2009 survey for inflation, GDP growth and changes in foreign exchange rates.
This year UBS launched an iPhone app, which is available for free download. Users can participate in data collection about their city for next year’s survey.