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Go west, tech job hunter

California was home to more than a quarter of new tech jobs posted in September, a recent study indicates.

The Golden State is generating the biggest share of new jobs in information technology, according to a study.

California accounted for nearly 28 percent of employment openings in software and other IT fields in September, according to an analysis of technology jobs posted to major Internet job boards. That's an increase from the 21 percent share the state claimed in January, according to the study, conducted by job board service provider NimbleCat.

Washington, D.C., ranked second to California, with 8 percent of new IT jobs in September. Then followed New York, with 7.1 percent; New Jersey with 6.4 percent; Texas with 5.8 percent; and Massachusetts with 5.7 percent.

The NimbleCat study, seen by CNET before public release, did not give a total number of new IT jobs created in the United States. That's partly because its research does not cover all online postings of IT jobs. Nevertheless, NimbleCat CEO Sunil Mehta said he's detected a clear pick-up in hiring in the industry. "The number of jobs has increased sharply--at least by a factor of two since January," he said on Thursday.

That reported increase follows other signs of recovery in the U.S. technology job market. Last week, the Labor Department said the number of payroll positions in computer system design and related services increased by 6,900 to 1.14 million from August to September. Employment in those technology sectors has been growing since April and is up by 32,700 from September 2003, according to the agency's figures.

In addition, research firm Meta Group recently predicted that salaries of information technology staff will increase by as much as 15 percent over the next three years.

On the other hand, IT workers' confidence in the job market slipped in September, according to a survey from staffing firm Hudson.