Undated (AP) _ Federal policymakers decided to stay on the same course when they met Oct. 1 to plot monetary strategy, according to minutes of the meeting released Friday.

On Wall Street, stock prices advanced, carrying the Dow Jones average of 30 industrials to a record close for the fifth time in the past eight sessions. The blue-chip index rose 4.82 to 1,404.36.

Home prices shot up in the Northeast last year but California retained the dubious distinction of being the most expensive place to buy houses, according to a report from the National Association of Realtors.

Meanwhile, the Labor Department projected the U.S. economy will create 16 million new jobs between 1984 and 1995 with the vast majority of new slots opening up in the service sector. Employment in manufacturing industries, such as steel, will continue to contract.

The minutes of the Federal Open Market Committee meeting showed the group voted 10-1 to leave policy unchanged.

The group also said they would fine-tune their strategy if needed to help the economy and give ''considerable attention'' to the dollar, which has been toppling recently from its once-lofty perch.

The FOMC, made up of Federal Reserve board members and five presidents of regional Fed banks, meets eight times a year to set monetary policy to be carried out by the Fed.

The Fed attempts to control expansion of the money supply to provide for steady, non-inflationay economic growth.

The FOMC minutes are customarily made public about six weeks after a meeting and immediately following the subsequent session. The FOMC gathered behind closed doors for two days earlier this week.

In an unsual development, Fed Chairman Paul Volcker disclosed this week in a letter to a congressional committee that recent rapid money supply growth would be acceptable.

The report from the Realtors' group, a Washington, D.C.-based trade association, said 7 of 11 cities in the United States with increases in home prices of 10 percent or higher were in the Northeast.

But California's big cities and their suburbs had the highest median price, with half the homes in the San Francisco area going for at least $144,100.

The state's Anaheim-Santa Ana and San Jose metropolitan areas were also ranked in the top five most expensive cities in which to buy existing houses.

Boston and its environs experienced the largest year-to-year increase in home prices. The median cost there went up 36.1 percent last year to $138,200 from $102,000.

Other cities in the Northeast with double-digit price gains were: New York; Albany, N.Y.; Hartford, Conn.; Philadelphia; Providence, R.I.; and Syracuse, N.Y.

The Labor Department report showed paralegal workers who aid lawyers in preparing cases will represent the fastest growing occupation in the country over the next 10 years.

The occupational outlook through 1995 also concludes that employment of stenographers, whose jobs are becoming obsolete due to office automation, is shrinking more rapidly than any other type of work.