The standard of living is the measure of the material well being of the given population. This would include things such as your properties, motors, incomes etc.... it covers anything that can be given a monetary values and excludes those that cannot e.g. happiness or luck. The standard of living is measured mainly by the GDP per capita and focuses on incomes this provides a general guide to the well -being - materialistically of the population in question. If the GDP were increasing this would suggest that the population is better off, there is more wealth within the economy, one may assume there is fuller employment and people are spending more as more is produced. If people are thought to be better off one assume this to signify that people are happier but this is not necessarily true but as this cannot be measured it has to be sidelined. Health is another important factor which is difficult to identify within monetary terms however there are different statistics which can be produced e.g. number of doctors per hospital etc... when the standard f living is measure if comparing over time it will be adjusted for inflation and dealt with in real terms. There is the issue of the PPP adjustment, which must be taken to account when comparing internationally as goods and service cost more and less in other nations depending on their own resources, labour markets, and performance. In Helsinki the spending on heating is likely to be much higher than in Andalusia but this does not indicate a difference in the standard of living it is simply misguiding. National GDP figures hide significant regional variations in output, employment and incomes per head of population. Within each region there are also areas of relative prosperity contrasting with unemployment black-spots and deep-rooted social and economic deprivation. We need to analyse the balance between consumption and investment. If an economy devotes too many resources to satisfying the short run needs & wants of consumers, there may be insufficient resources for investment needed for long-term economic development. Faster economic growth might improve living standards today but lead to an over-exploitation of scarce finite economic resources thereby limiting future growth prospects.