US jobless claims rise, but so do durable goods

The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose to the highest level since September, while durable goods order for October unexpectedly rose.

Weekly jobless claims rose, but the underlying trend remained consistent with a firming labor market.

Read MoreUS personal income up less than expected

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits increased 21,000 to a seasonally adjusted 313,000 for the week ended Nov. 22, the Labor Department said on Wednesday. It was the first-time since early September that claims broke above the 300,000 threshold.

The four-week moving average of claims, considered a better measure of labor market trends as it irons out week-to-week volatility, remained below 300,000 for an 11th straight week, a sign that the jobs market was improving.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast claims falling to 288,000 last week. A Labor Department analyst said there were no special factors influencing last week's claims data.

The claims report showed the number of people still receiving benefits after an initial week of aid fell 17,000 to 2.32 million in the week ended Nov. 15, the lowest since December 2000.

The so-called continuing claims covered the household survey week from which the unemployment rate for November will be calculated. Continuing claims fell 71,000 between the October and November survey period, suggesting the unemployment rate could fall from a six-year low of 5.8 percent.

US core capital goods orders fall

New orders for U.S.-made capital goods unexpectedly fell for a second straight month in October, a sign that the economy lost some momentum early in the fourth quarter.

The Commerce Department said on Wednesday non-defense capital goods orders excluding aircraft, a closely watched proxy for business spending plans, declined 1.3 percent last month. That followed a 1.3 percent fall in September.

The drop in the so-called core capital goods orders suggested that a brisk pace of spending on equipment set in the third quarter ebbed early in the fourth quarter.

A sturdy pace of business spending on equipment helped the economy grow at a 3.9 percent annual pace in the third quarter.

Economists polled by Reuters had expected core capital goods orders to increase 1.0 percent last month.

Shipments of these goods, which are used to calculate equipment spending in the government's gross domestic product measurement, fell 0.4 percent in October after rising 0.4 percent in September.

But overall orders for durable goods - items ranging from toasters to aircraft that are meant to last three years or more increased 0.4 percent, snapping two straight months of declines.

Durable goods orders have been volatile in recent months because of big swings in aircraft orders. Orders for transportation equipment increased 3.4 percent in October after declining 3.3 percent in September.

The gain came despite Boeing BA.N receiving only 46 aircraft orders, down from 122 in September, according to information posted on the planemaker' s website.

Automobile orders rose 0.3 percent last month, halting two straight months of declines.