Lots of Lipstick on this Pig
Sonoma County Economic Development Board Fall 2006 Report (snippets below)
* Sonoma County’s economy is expanding unevenly.
* Manufacturing still faces a number of closings and consolidations and many service industries are paring workers.
* Financial institutions account for 9.5 percent of the public company employment base in Sonoma County.
* Services account for 35.2 percent of local employment
* Transportation represents 0.3 percent of local market employment.
* Tech companies, at 41.7 percent, are the largest contributor to the Sonoma County employment base.
"Tech-related manufacturers have been on a rollercoaster ride for much of the past two years, but the general trend in hiring is still downward as the industry consolidates. The latest closure was at TriVascular, which laid off 270 workers when it closed its local facilities."
"Economic stability is not strong enough for continued hiring in leisure and hospitality services or in business and professional services, for which payrolls have fallen substantially since the beginning of this year. Neither retailing nor construction provides additional support."
"Construction payrolls already have shrunk back to their level of one year ago following a spike in residential construction in late 2005."
"The housing market reflects the weak pace of economic growth, with a downturn in prices and unsold inventory that has more than doubled over the past year."
"The housing market has cooled considerably. The California Association of Realtors reports prices for single-family homes peaked in January and unsold inventories are their highest since 2003. The turn in the housing market has been as sharp and sudden as it was during the 2001 recession."
"The outlook for Sonoma County remains very moderate with the potential for considerable near-term volatility depending upon the speed and depth of the housing market adjustment."