According to the the U.S. Department of Labor, seasonally adjusted (SA) unemployment claims fell during the last last week of November to 298,000. This marks only the second time since the beginning of the great recession that unemployment claims have fallen below the 300,000 threshold; claims previously fell below this threshold the week of September 7, 2013. Similarly the four week moving average for unemployment claims also fell to 322,250, a decline of 10,750 from the previous week. Overall unemployment claims generally have been decreasing year over year since peaking in 2009.
The Department of Commerce on Thursday released its second estimate of third quarter GDP. Real quarterly output expanded at a 3.6 percent annual rate, as shown below, compared to a 2.5 percent increase in the second quarter.