) -- The number of Americans filing for first time unemployment benefits fell last week to levels last seen in 2008 according to a Labor Department report.
Initial jobless claims dropped by 19,000 to 366,000 on a seasonally adjusted basis in the week ended Dec. 10 from a revised 385,000 in the previous week. Economists had expected to see claims rise to 390,000 from the originally reported 381,000 the prior week, according to Thomson Reuters.
The four-week moving average declined by 6,500 to 387,750 from the previous week's revised average of 394,250.
Unadjusted, there were 433,287 initial claims last week, an 11.9% drop from the comparable week in 2010.
-- Written by Kaitlyn Kiernan in New York.
>To contact the writer of this article, click here:
To follow the writer on Twitter, go to