The Toronto stock market was slightly lower Tuesday with buyers disinclined to do much following the previous session’s sharp advance, which was spurred by hopes that a major fiscal crisis in the U.S. can be avoided.The S&P/TSX composite index was 16.04 points lower to 12,024.36 following a 163-point run-up Monday while the TSX Venture Exchange added 1.03 points to 1,250.99.The Canadian dollar declined 0.14 of a cent to 100.2 cents US.U.S. indexes were also lower following strong gains Monday, held back in part by earnings disappointments from tech giant Hewlett Packard and electronics chain Best Buy.The Dow Jones industrials gave back 29.86 points to 12,766.1 after surging 208 points, the Nasdaq dipped 4.73 points to 2,911.34 and the S&P 500 index inched 1.4 points lower to 1,385.49.The TSX and New York indexes racked up solid advances Monday as traders felt more optimistic that American politicians can come together to agree on a budget deal by the end of next month.Without such a deal, the U.S. risks going over a so-called fiscal cliff and into recession as the economy would suffer a severe shock from a combination of automatic spending cuts and the expiration of Bush-era tax cuts.The strong advances Monday helped to make up some of the losses registered on markets in the wake of the U.S. election on Nov. 6. The results left the American political landscape unchanged and raised worries that negotiations on a budget deal would quickly get bogged down in partisan bickering.But traders were pleased at the conciliatory tone adopted late last week and a comment by U.S. President Barack Obama that he’s confident lawmakers can deal with the fiscal situation.However, analysts cautioned that rhetoric can only go so far and markets will be looking for progress in negotiations next week after the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday is out of the way.Shares in Hewlett-Packard Co. plunged 10.7 per cent to US$11.88. The tech giant is taking a US$8.8-billion charge in its latest quarterly results as it said there were “serious accounting improprieties, disclosure failures and outright misrepresentations at Autonomy Corporation PLC,” which HP bought last year.HP’s net loss for the fiscal fourth quarter amounted to $6.85 billion, or $3.49 per share. That compares with net income of $239 million, or 12 cents per share, in the same period last year.Electronics chain Best Buy Co. reported another dismal quarter on Tuesday, recording a loss of $10 million or three cents per share in the third quarter, hurt by a continued sales slump and charges related to restructuring. That compares with net income of $156 million, or 42 cents per share in the prior-year period and its shares dropped 12.73 per cent to $12.Commodity prices slipped following big gains Monday with December copper unchanged at US$3.53 a pound following an eight-cent jump Monday. The base metals sector declined 0.6 per cent as Thompson Creek Metals (TSX:TCM) dropped 16 cents to C$2.66 while Turquoise Hill Resources (TSX:TRQ) dropped 12 cents to $7.55.The gold sector was also off 0.6 per cent with December bullion was down $3.90 to US$1,730.50 an ounce. Iamgold (TSX:IMG) was down 15 cents to C$11.68 while Agnico-Eagle Mines (TSX:AEM) faded 49 cents to $54.71.The January crude contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange fell $1.06 to US$88.22 a barrel. Prices had run up sharply over the previous two sessions on worries that fighting between Israel and Hamas could spread, jeopardizing oil shipments from the Mideast. The energy sector dipped 0.4 per cent and Cenovus Energy (TSX:CVE) gave back 59 cents to C$32.40 and Imperial Oil (TSX:IM) shed 27 cents to $43.53.The tech sector led advances with Research In Motion Ltd. (TSX:RIM) ahead 33 cents to $9.92 after Jeffries tech analyst Peter Misek upgraded the stock from underperform to hold. He said he was surprised by the strongly positive initial feedback on RIM’s new BB10 handset from carriers. The BB10 is expected to be launched Jan. 30.Traders also looked to the eurozone after France lost its AAA credit rating. Moody’s Investors Service cited concerns over France’s prospects for economic growth and its exposure to Europe’s financial crisis in announcing its downgrade. This is the second ratings downgrade to have hit France this year: Standard & Poor’s agency lowered its score in January.French finance minister Pierre Moscovici insisted that France’s credibility remains strong and that the government’s plan to reduce unemployment and restore growth will show results.Elsewhere on the corporate front, Canada’s oldest company, Hudson’s Bay Co., said Monday its return to the public stock market values the retail company at $17 a share, or about $2 billion in total. HBC said it plans to sell a total of 21 million shares, about one-fifth of the company’s stock, raising about $365 million through an initial public offering. Share trading under the symbol “HBC” is expected to begin on the closing of the offering, expected Nov. 26.Canadian Satellite Radio Holdings Inc. (TSX:XSR), the parent company of Sirius XM Canada Inc., said Tuesday it will pay a special cash dividend of 8.25 cents per class A subordinate voting share and 2.75 cents per class B voting share. The broadcaster will also pay begin paying a quarterly dividend of the same amount and its shares surged 18.37 per cent to $5.80.Meanwhile, European Union officials will make a fresh try Tuesday at reaching a political accord on desperately needed bailout loans to Greece.Greece is still waiting for a €31.5-billion loan, the latest instalment of the bailout money that is keeping the country afloat. The loan was due to have been signed off last week but a meeting of the finance ministers from the 17 European Union countries that use the euro failed to agree on how to get Greece’s bailout program back on track.European bourses were positive as London’s FTSE 100 edged up 0.04 per cent while Frankfurt’s DAX was up 0.6 per cent and the Paris CAC 40 gained 0.47 per cent.