Unemployment claims fell for the second time in three weeks last week to their second-lowest level this year. That's an encouraging sign that companies are cutting fewer workers and may be ready to accelerate hiring.

Below are the states with the largest declines and increases in jobless claims for the week ending Nov. 27. That's one week behind the national data:

States with largest drops in claims:

Texas: Down 8,742, due to fewer layoffs in service and manufacturing

California: Down 8,320, due to fewer layoffs in services

Florida: Down 7,027 due to fewer layoffs in construction, trade, services and agriculture

Georgia: Down 5,823, due to fewer layoffs in construction, trade, services and manufacturing

North Carolina: Down 4,171, fewer layoffs in services, furniture, and fabricated metals

States with largest increases in claims:

Wisconsin: Up 7,545, due to layoffs in manufacturing

Iowa: Up 2,789, due to layoffs in construction and manufacturing

Idaho: Up 1,810, no reason given

Indiana: Up 1,667, due to layoffs in the auto and manufacturing industries

Washington: Up 1,260, no reason given