*Was life in the USSR materially easier, or is it just the nostalgia of the older generation that colors everything in rainbow colors?*

*Is it possible to really compare the level of income of modern Russians and Soviet people in the 1970s and 1980s?*

*Yes, it is quite possible to compare salaries «then and now»! And using absolutely scientific methods.*

*The generally accepted ways of comparing the incomes of people from different eras is to calculate the deflator in three ways:*

**The ruble against the dollar was stable in the 1970s and 1980s. 1 $ cost**

The average salary of a citizen of the USSR was at the level of 125-135 rubles.

Of course, leaders, party officials, specialists from defense enterprises and workers in heavy industries in the North could earn more — from 400 to 1000 rubles. But there were also low-paid professions. The salary of the educator — 80, the librarian — 90-100, the cleaners in the organization — 60,

**Therefore, the average value is 130-150 rubles.**

**The maximum pension was 132 rubles, and the average was 80-100.**

Accordingly, with the dollar exchange rate in 2021 at the level of 76 rubles, the Soviet salary of 150 rubles corresponds to the current one in the amount of 18,095 rubles.

In 2021, the average salary in the Russian Federation is 37,000 rubles.

**The consumer basket is the sum of the prices of those goods that a person buys under any circumstances. It usually includes**

*In the 1980s, a loaf of white bread cost 20 kopecks, black — from 8 kopecks, a loaf — 16 kopecks. The average price for a loaf today is about 36 rubles, with the exception of the extreme North and South.*

*Accordingly, when converted to the cost of a loaf, the Soviet salary was equal to 937.5 pieces. At current prices, this corresponds to an income of 33,750 rubles, which, again, is below the average salary in modern Russia.*

**Approximately the same ratio gives recalculation for other food products.**

**volume_up**

**A full-fledged «male» lunch in a factory canteen in the USSR could cost 1 ruble. An average business lunch with the same set of dishes is now at the level of 250. According to this indicator, the Soviet salary is practically comparable to today’s — 37,500.**

Luxury in the form of caviar or salmon was in short supply, so it makes no sense to recount them.

*Clothes and footwear for the Soviet people were quite expensive. It was difficult to buy it, especially in the heyday of the shortage of the 1970s and 1980s. Therefore, they bought them much less often, took care, darned, worn out one after another. In terms of the Soviet salary for the price of a demi-season coat of 60 rubles, it corresponds to the modern 20,000 rubles.*

**Apart from a car, the most expensive purchase for the Soviet people was furniture and household appliances.**

*First colored*

**For a kilowatt of electricity, Soviet people paid symbolic**

**But there were also items of expenditure on which the Soviet people were seriously saving.**

*A Soviet tram cost 3 kopecks. Travel, for example, in modern Yekaterinburg — 28 rubles. The recalculation of this indicator equates the salary of 150 rubles to 140,000 current rubles.*

**Why does life in the USSR seem to the older generation easier in material terms?**

There are three reasons for this.

**We have already mentioned one more criterion for comparing the standard of living — the cost of significant goods.**

*The fact is that the Soviet people received part of these benefits completely free of charge. He did not have to buy an apartment for himself, pay for the education of his children. There was no paid medicine. In schools, technical schools and universities they paid quite a decent scholarship from 40 to 60 rubles, and therefore the teenagers very quickly got off their parents’ necks.*

**There was no unemployment or wage delays. All this, of course, allowed oneself to feel much more free.**

**Soviet people were extremely moderate in their way of life. There were no temptations of advertising, good goods are in short supply. Therefore, it was not shameful to walk in one cloak for 20 years.**

**And the third factor was that there were no loans, which means that I did not have to overpay many times for goods. They either saved up for expensive purchases or borrowed from loved ones. In extreme cases, there was an interest-free mutual assistance fund.**