from Reuters Money:

Does money make you happy?

Rolling around in piles of dough would undeniably make a lot of people happy, but is money the secret to true happiness?

Are happiness and life satisfaction even the same thing? Do you get happier and happier as you accumulate more money?

Not necessarily. Recent research has shown the relationship between wealth and happiness to be complex. Happiness may depend on how you deploy that money and some people may just be born happy.

Recently, Reuters blogger Felix Salmon sat down with economists Justin Wolfers, a frequent contributor to Freakonomics, and Charles Kenny, author of the bestselling book Getting Better, to discuss the economics of happiness at the Aspen Ideas Festival. It was a happy time.

Mideast banks, funds seek to tap Muslim women’s wealth

women banking (Photos: One of Dubai Islamic Bank’s women-only branches in Deira, October 26, 2010./Jumana El-Heloueh)

Emirati housewife Sarah Alzarouni brushed past a group of women clad in floor-length black robes, some with only their eyes showing, to enter through the frosted doors of one of Dubai Islamic Bank’s women-only branches. Clutching a Louis Vuitton bag to match her designer head scarf, Alzarouni greeted the female tellers and bank manager with three kisses on the cheek and sat down to do business.

“I am much more comfortable working with ladies than in a mixed environment,” Alzarouni, 27, said. “When I come here, I feel like one of them. They understand my needs and I can move freely, not having to always think where I am and whether my (scarf) has moved. As a Muslim, it is really important for me to deal with an Islamic bank. “

Many affluent Muslim women share Alzarouni’s sentiments and they are increasingly turning to Islamic banks to manage their money. These women are looking beyond basic banking services to sophisticated products to grow their wealth while complying with Islamic principals that include a ban on interest.