The S&P/TSX composite index closed down 6.82 points at 15,234.34. The Canadian dollar gained 0.15 of a U.S. cent to 79.98 cents.
New York indexes were significantly lower following a report that U.S. gross domestic product grew at an annual rate of 2.2 per cent in the October-December quarter, weaker than the 2.6 per cent first estimated last month in a reflection of weaker business stockpiling and a bigger trade deficit.
A bigger surprise was a glum reading on the manufacturing sector in the U.S. Midwest, which fell to a 5 1/2-year low in February. The Chicago Purchasing Managers Index fell to 45.8 from 59.4 in December, a reading indicating contraction.
"That number is a bit of a shocker, because that PMI number has remained consistently above 50 for many, many years," observed Himalaya Jain, portfolio manager, portfolio advisory group at Scotia McLeod.
"So, there is something very unusual (and) I would say that number would be treated with a very, very high degree of skepticism."
Also, the University of Michigan's widely watched consumer sentiment index slipped to 95.4 from 98.1 in January.
The Dow Jones industrials fell 81.72 points to 18,132.70, the Nasdaq lost 24.36 points to 4,963.53 and the S&P 500 index retreated 6.24 points to 2,104.50.
The TSX metals and mining sector led advancers, up 1.70 per cent as May copper was virtually unchanged at US$2.69 a pound.
April gold rose $3 to US$1,213,10 an ounce and the gold sector gained 1.1 per cent.
The energy sector fell 0.59 per cent even as oil prices advanced after having plunged almost $3 a barrel on Thursday to the lowest level in a month as data continued to show large buildups of crude inventories in the United States.
On Friday, the April crude contract in New York closed up $1.59 at US$49.76 a barrel though still own more than a dollar on the week as U.S. inventories remain at their highest levels in 80 years. Also depressing oil and other commodity prices lately is a steadily strengthening U.S. currency.
Tech stocks led decliners, down 2.07 per cent.
The TSX finished the week up 0.04 per cent amid a run of generally well-received earnings reports from most of the big Canadian banks.
In corporate news, Aimia Inc., (TSX:AIM) the company that operates customer loyalty programs for Air Canada (TSX:AC) and for TD Bank (TSX:TD) and CIBC (TSX:CM) credit cards and other business partners posted adjusted earnings of $60 million or 20 cents a share, four cents short of forecasts. Revenue of $761.1 million beat estimates, but the stock dropped $1.50 or more than 10 per cent to $12.85.
And Bombardier Inc.'s (TSX:BBD.B) CS300 passenger jet made its long-awaited maiden flight Friday. Prior to liftoff, Bombardier announced that it will get about $1.1 billion from a previously announced equity financing to help pay for the sharply higher costs of the CSeries program. Also, the Wall Street Journal says Bombardier plans to issue 3 1/2-year and 10-year debt but pricing has yet to be set. Bombardier shares lost a penny to $2.60.