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Silicon Valley job boom ends for now as employment growth slows down: report

George Avalos, The Mercury News on

Published in Business News

SAN JOSE, California — Silicon Valley’s job boom has hit a pause, and while the region is still adding workers, the pace of hiring in 2023 was markedly slower than the year before, a new report shows.

Although hiring is in a slump, median household income is on the rise, according to the Silicon Valley Index 2024, a closely watched annual report released Monday.

Overall, Silicon Valley’s economy remains relatively healthy, according to the new assessment from Joint Venture Silicon Valley, the San Jose think tank that released the new report on the region’s economic mosaic.

“This is still a growing economy,” said Russell Hancock, the group’s president.

Nonetheless, hiring has shifted into low gear in Silicon Valley, according to the Index 2024 report. The index defines Silicon Valley as Santa Clara County, San Mateo County, the southern Alameda County region that includes Fremont, and a section of Santa Cruz County.

Over the one-year period that ended in June 2023, Silicon Valley added about 2,700 jobs, the report determined. That’s a sharp slowdown from the 88,000 jobs the region added during the one-year period that ended in June 2022.

 

The report comes amid a steady, dreary drumbeat of tech industry job cuts. At the same time, companies are retreating from office space, creating high vacancy rates and upending the commercial real estate landscape.

“The pandemic was a bonanza for the tech industry, which did some over-hiring,” Hancock said. “Our largest tech employers did some re-calibrating. Tech companies have been doing some right-sizing.”

Despite the slowdown in employment growth, household income is showing some improvement in Silicon Valley, according to the report. In 2022, the most recent year for which statistics are available, median household income was $149,588. That was higher than the 2021 level for the income benchmark but below the 2020 level, the 2024 Index report determined.

The tech sector now embraces what Hancock describes as a business approach focused on reining in costs and keeping Wall Street placated.

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