It was the seventh consecutive week initial claims have dropped. The four-week rolling average for first-time claims filed as of Saturday was 394,250, down 3,250 from the previous revised average, the department said.
The Labor Department said October's unemployment rate was 9 percent, down from 9.1 percent in September.
For the week ending Nov. 12, Indiana posted the largest increase in first-time claims with 2,251 additional claims filed. California posted the largest decrease in first-time claims with 9,382 fewer claims filed.