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Contrary to the myth created by Republicans, the Chamber of Commerce and the Guam Hotel and Restaurant Association, wages on Guam have do not have anything to do with the cost of goods on our island. In fact we see that as the minimum wage increased, the rate of inflation actually went down! Since Guam imports almost 100% of our consumer goods and food, their prices are affected by global conditions far beyond Guam’s control. The sad part is wages have not increased at the same rate leaving our families with a lowering standard of living. In ’06 the minimum wage (MW) was $5.15 and the Consumer Price Index (CPI) went up by 11.6%. In Sep ’07 the MW went up to $5.85 but the CPI went down to 6.8%. When the MW went up to $6.55 in Sep ’08 the CPI went down to 6.2%. This clearly shows an increase in wages will not increase prices. See figures from the Guam Department of Labor and Bureau of Statistics and Plans.

Hotel and other Lodging Places Production workers
Date # Production Workers Avg hourly earning Avg hours worked Min. Wage Consumer Price Index

Mar-03 3,540 $6.91 33.8 $5.15 2.7
Jun-03 3,170 $6.76 32.1 $5.15 2.7
Dec-04 4,050 $6.89 35.6 $5.15 6.1
Mar-05 4,120 $6.88 34.6 $5.15 7.7
Jun-05 4,210 $6.83 34.9 $5.15 7.7
Sep-05 4,360 $6.79 34.7 $5.15 7.7
Dec-05 4,450 $6.60 36.7 $5.15 7.7
Mar-06 4,550 $7.01 35.8 $5.15 11.6
Jun-06 4,520 $6.96 34 $5.15 11.6
Dec-06 4,490 $6.89 36.8 $5.15 11.6
Mar-07 4,470 $6.78 36.6 $5.15 6.8
Jun-07 4,530 $7.27 35.9 $5.15 6.8
Sep-07 4,540 $7.54 35 $5.85 6.8
Dec-07 4,590 $7.89 36.9 $5.85 6.8
Mar-08 4,580 $7.53 37.1 $5.85 6.2
Jun-08 4,500 $7.64 36.4 $5.85 6.2
Sep-08 4,390 $7.90 36 $6.55 6.2
Dec-08 4,360 $8.24 35.8 $6.55 6.2
Mar-09 4,250 $7.98 36.1 $6.55

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