The Bay Area added 8,800 jobs in October, extending a robust trend for the local economy that leaves the region on pace to double its job gains in 2012 compared with last year, state officials reported Friday.
A surge in employment for the South Bay and the San Francisco-San Mateo-Marin region offset job losses in the East Bay, the release from the state's Employment Development Department showed.
The report eased fears in recent months that the remarkable job boom in the Bay Area had cooled off. It also shows the region's rebound is the real deal.
"A broad-based jobs recovery in the Bay Area remained firmly intact in October, despite growing fears about the fiscal cliff and slowing demand from abroad," said Scott Anderson, chief economist with Bank of the West.
The statewide jobless rate improved to 10.1 percent in October, lower than September's 10.2 percent.
Unemployment rates for the Bay Area's three major urban centers remained unchanged, a Beacon analysis of the EDD figures shows. The jobless rate was 8.6 percent in the East Bay, 8 percent in the South Bay and 6.6 percent in the San Francisco metro area, the same as the month before.
The South Bay was the nine-county region's strongest job market in October, adding 3,400 jobs. Close behind was the San Francisco-San Mateo-Marin metro region, which gained 3,200 positions. The East Bay lost 800 jobs. The EDD figures are adjusted for seasonal job variations.
The gains in the Bay Area echoed the sturdy performance throughout the state in October.
California added 45,800 jobs during October -- accounting for 27 percent of all the jobs added nationwide last month.
"The state as a whole is now in recovery from the deep recession," said Stephen Levy, director
The job market in the Bay Area is growing at roughly double the pace in 2012 as it did in 2011, this newspaper's analysis of the EDD figures shows.
In the first 10 months of this year, the Bay Area added nearly 85,000 jobs. That's well ahead of the gain of 44,000 jobs added in the Bay Area during the same 10-month period last year, the EDD reported.
Private industry employers added 10,000 jobs in the Bay Area during October, Beacon estimated. Government agencies, in contrast, shed 1,200 jobs.
"The private sector is leading the way for the Bay Area job market, no doubt about that," said Jeffrey Michael, director of the Stockton-based Business Forecasting Center at the University of the Pacific. "The South Bay and San Francisco area had a very strong month."
The divergence between the private and public sectors was especially pronounced in the East Bay, which added 900 private sector jobs but lost 1,700 government jobs.
"The government sector is the one place where we have been losing jobs," Michael said. "But the Bay Area is relatively less dependent than a lot of other areas on government. Government job losses are not as much of a drag on the Bay Area as other places."
The South Bay enjoyed broad-based job gains during October, the Beacon analysis showed. Retail gained 1,700 jobs, which could signal good times for holiday shopping in that market. Construction added 1,300 jobs amid a remarkable binge of leases by numerous technology titans. Hotels and restaurants added 1,100 jobs. Durable goods manufacturing, which includes computer and electronics manufacturing, added 800 jobs.
The East Bay's private industry gains were more limited. Hotels and restaurants gained 1,000 jobs, arts and entertainment was up by 700 jobs, while construction added 600.
The South Bay and San Francisco metro area will continue to benefit greatly from the high-tech boom.
"The Bay Area's high tech centers are likely to be among the nation's job growth leaders," Levy said in comments emailed to this newspaper.
Contact George Avalos at 925-977-8477. Follow him at twitter.com/george_avalos.