In ranking the 150 counties, Natixis used four broad categories, namely: health, including life expectancy and access to quality health services; material well-being or the means to live a comfortable life in retirement; quality of life, including factors such as crime rates and air pollution; and finances, including strength of the host nation's financial system and tax rates.
Numbers are provided for the four categories with 10 being the highest. European nations dominated the list with 8 of the top 10 positions. The only two countries outside Europe that made it high on the list are from the southern hemisphere - Australia in 5th place and New Zealand in 9th place.
The topnotcher is Switzerland, followed by Norway, which just traded places from the first list. Switzerland is recommended for retirees who are into golf, hiking, skiing or hang gliding. Norway, with its population-to-oil reserve ratio "would make any Texas tycoon weep."
Australia was noted for its growing economy and extremely low levels of unemployment, while New Zealand is the haven for active retirees who are searching for a health conscious and outdoorsy community with beautiful and dramatic landscape to boot.
Here is the complete list of the top 10 retirement havens.