July 14, 2024
The South Bay muscled up to produce a gain of 3,300 jobs, nearly half of all the hiring in the Bay Area.

The Bay Area powered to big job gains in May, a hiring surge led by the South Bay that — for now — has banished the ominous specter of a weak labor market and job losses that haunted the region earlier this year.

The nine-county region added 7,000 jobs in May, the most in a month since December 2023, when the area produced a gain of 11,200 positions, the state’s labor agency reported Friday.

The South Bay muscled up to produce a gain of 3,300 jobs, nearly half of all the hiring in the Bay Area during May, according to the state Employment Development Department.

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The East Bay added 2,100 jobs while the San Francisco-San Mateo region added 1,100 positions, the EDD reported.

California added 43,700 jobs in May. California also reached a record-high number of nonfarm payroll jobs in May. For the first time, California has more than 18 million non-farm payroll jobs. Both the California and the Bay Area numbers were adjusted for seasonal volatility.

The statewide unemployment rate was 5.2% in May, an improvement from the California unemployment rate of 5.3% in April.

The improvement marked the first time in nearly two years that the statewide jobless rate decreased. In August 2022, the statewide unemployment rate reached a record-low level of 3.8%. The jobless rate has steadily worsened since then until the improvement in May.