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Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Finland is giving 2,000 citizens a guaranteed income

[Source] Finland has started a radical experiment: It's giving 2,000 citizens a guaranteed income, with funds that keep flowing whether participants work or not.

The program, which kicks off this month, is one of the first efforts to test a "universal basic income." Participants will receive €560 ($587) a month -- money that is guaranteed regardless of income, wealth or employment status.

The idea is that a universal income offers workers greater security, especially as technological advances reduce the need for human labor. It will also allow unemployed people to pick up odd jobs without losing their benefits.

The initial program will run for a period of two years. Participants were randomly selected, but had to be receiving unemployment benefits or an income subsidy. The money they are paid through the program will not be taxed.

If the program is successful, it could be expanded to include all adult Finns.

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