Saturday, March 24, 2007

Silicon Valley's job market heated up again in February

Silicon Valley's job market heated up again in February, with payroll gains compared with the month before and a year earlier, according to a report today from the state Employment Development Department.

In the superbly sunny San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara metropolitan area - which you may know better as Santa Clara and San Benito counties - the number of payroll jobs hit 905,800 in February - up 2,700, or 0.3 percent, from the month before. That number was up 21,100, or 2.4 percent, from February 2006.

The state counted a better-than-average seasonal gain in private educational and health services. Compared with January, the valley had more jobs in professional and business services and in arts, entertainment and recreation. The gains more than offset seasonal job losses among retailers.

Compared with February 2006, the valley had 6,100 more jobs in professional and business services, a category that includes computer systems design. Once again, the state counted 3,100 more leisure and hospitality jobs, which includes those always popular eating and drinking establishments.

The unemployment rate, meanwhile, dropped to 4.6 percent from 4.7

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