A week ago, first-time claims fell by 21,000, putting the past two weeks at a net drop of 1,000 initial claims.
The four-week rolling average of initial unemployment benefit claims rose by 2,000 to 456,000.
The department said the biggest increases in claims for the week ending Oct. 23 were reported by California with 3,755 additional claims, Illinois, which added 3,710 and Pennsylvania, which added 2,256.
For the week ending Oct. 23, the biggest decrease was reported by Kentucky with a decline of 1,699, followed by Florida with a decline of 1,615 and Puerto Rico with a decline of 1,153.
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