Downtown office buildings Toronto

North American stock markets fell slightly as investors continued to take a pause while waiting for signals about a trade deal and the strength of consumer spending.

The S&P/TSX composite index closed down 6.63 points at 16,999.19.

In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 54.80 points at 27,766.29. The S&P 500 index was down 4.92 points at 3,103.54, while the Nasdaq composite was down 20.52 points at 8,506.21.

The Canadian dollar traded for US75.27¢ compared with an average of US75.17¢ on Wednesday.

The January crude contract was up US$1.57 at US$58.58 per barrel and the January natural gas contract was up US1.1¢ at US$2.62 per mmBTU.

The December gold contract was down US$10.60 at US$1,463.60 an ounce and the December copper contract was down US2.6¢ at US$2.62 a pound.