Weekly jobless claims post stunning decline to 199,000, the lowest level since 1969

The Labor Department reported that the number of people filing for unemployment insurance fell to their lowest level in more than 50 years.

New claims totaled 197,000, which was the last time a number like this was seen. The report was well below the previous week's 270,000.

The Labor Department did not indicate any special factors that caused the fall, which could be a sign that the jobs market is still struggling to come back.

The second-quarter GDP growth was revised up slightly to 2.1%, but that was below estimates. The decline in durable goods orders was worse than expected.

Continuing claims fell by 60,000 to 2.05 million, a new low for the Pandemic Era.

The Federal Reserve has kept crisis-level policies in place despite the steady improvement in the jobs market despite the tumble in weekly claims.

Markets are watching when the central bank might start raising interest rates, since the Fed has said it will begin to reduce its monthly bond purchases. According to the FedWatch tracker, traders think there will be three rate hikes next year.

Government bond yields went up after the report and Wall Street was expecting a negative open.

The economy grew a bit faster than thought in the summer, but not as fast as Wall Street had expected.

The Commerce Department said GDP increased one-tenth of a percentage point from the initial estimate of 2%, mostly due to upward revisions in consumer purchases and private inventory investment.

The increase in wages and salaries was revised upward by more than 50% from the original estimate.

This is breaking news. You can check back here for more updates.