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A hybrid evolutionary programming (EP) method is presented for global optimization of complex circuits. The conventional EP is integrated with a clustering algorithm to improve the robustness of the algorithm for complex multimodal circuit optimization problems. The EP generates populations around the regions of the search space which can potentially contain a minimum but may be overlooked. The clustering algorithm is used to identify these regions dynamically. In order to improve the speed of optimization, the EP is combined with a gradient-based search method in an efficient fashion. The local search is performed from the center of each identified cluster in order to find the minimum in the region very fast. The hybrid algorithm can also reduce the search space by avoiding the search in the areas that were previously investigated. This feature greatly improves the speed of optimization and prevents the premature convergence as well. The algorithm performed very well in several benchmark problems including a test function minimization and global optimization of a complex RF diplexer circuit.