European shares finished virtually unchanged, as investors took profits.
Economic news of the day included the fact that the number of people filing first time claims for unemployment benefit in the US rose less than expected and the Bank of England left UK interest rates unchanged.
Telecom shares were the top decliners.
Miners retreated as copper prices fell back with investors fretting over possible tighter monetary policy in China, the world’s top metals consumer.
The dollar was up against a basket of major currencies including the euro.
Crude oil prices eased after hitting a new 14-month high on Wednesday due to colder temperatures in the US and a weaker dollar.