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The United States isn't the best country to raise kids — by a long shot — survey says

Looking to start a family? The United States isn't the best place to do so, according to a new survey from U.S. News & World Report. The organization released its 2020 list of the "Best Countries for Raising Kids" on Wednesday — and the United States rings in at number 18, preceded by Australia, Canada and many European nations.

The Scandinavian nations of Denmark, Sweden and Norway were ranked the highest on the list, respectively. The three countries were also top three on the 2019 ranking — with Sweden coming in first and Denmark ranking second. The Central Asian country of Kazakhstan came in last in the rankings this year. 

The ranking draws from "a global perceptions-based" survey and orders countries using scores from a compilation of eight different "country attributes," according to the survey. The attributes are: Income equality, well-developed public education, caring about human rights, gender equality, well-developed health care systems, being considered safe, being considered family friendly and being considered happy.

The ranking was released with the annual "Best Countries" list, which ranks of 73 different nations, according to the outlet. Over 20,000 people were given the survey to assess the countries based on 65 attributes. The 73 countries chosen for the survey had to meet four criteria, including "Top 100 countries in terms of gross domestic product in 2017" and "Top 100 countries in terms of foreign direct investment inflows in 2017," both based on World Bank data. 

The best country overall was determined to be Switzerland, followed by Canada and Japan, according to the rankings. Lebanon came in last, with Serbia second to last and Oman third to last. 

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