Each year at this time I make a comprehensive overview of the employment sectors that drive the Bay Area economy, as a tool to help predict the relative health of the local real estate sectors and locations.
The picture looks a lot different to last year or even to six months ago. Profits are back, sales are up; these are leading indicators for employment and demand for space in these sectors in 2011.
The Bay Area... many diverse economic drivers, most on independent trajectories
The 7+ million people in the Bay Area are 19% of the State’s population and 2% of the Nation’s. The area’s $373 billion GDP in 2008 is 3% of the Nation’s.
The only major metropolitan area with more Fortune Global 1000 companies is NYC, with 69 vs. the Bay Area’s 54 which have sales of $957 billion vs. NYC’s $1,173 billion. Since the Bay Area outranks NYC in the number of fast growing companies NYC’s top share of large companies may not hold.
If the Bay Area were a country it would be ranked 25th behind Norway but in front of Austria and Taiwan. The Bay Area is second to the DC Metro Area and tied with Boston for the proportion of the population with 4-year or greater degrees.
And of course, the Bay Area’s infrastructure for innovation is second to none. It is always the “new new thing” that brings the Bay Area back from a downturn.