Initial jobless claims fell 3.5% last week to 453,000, which is at the level last seen at the beginning of the month and lower than most analysts' estimates. The Labor Department said the unadjusted figure of actual initial claims for the week ended Sept. 25 decreased by 16,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 469,000. Analysts surveyed by Econoday were projecting claims to fall to 459,000 from the prior week with a ranges of estimates between 452,000 to 465,000. A survey expected last week's figure to come in at 450,000. And economists polled by MarketWatch put the number at 460,000. The four-week moving average of 458,000 claims was down about 1.3% from the prior week's revised average of 464,250, according to the Labor Department data. The seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate remained relatively flat with the prior week at 3.5%, down slightly from a revised 3.6%. Write to Jason Philyaw.