This story was updated at 8:35 a.m. EDT.
U.S. stock index futures followed global shares sharply lower Thursday after the Bank of Japan stunned markets by choosing not to expand its monetary stimulus.
The BOJ’s decision to hold steady in the face of soft global demand and a rise in the yen was particularly jarring for markets after media reports ahead of the meeting said it wanted to go deeper into negative interest rates.
The Japanese central bank’s choice came a day after the U.S. Federal Reserve decided to hold steady on its interest rates and the easing of fears that the Fed would signal a rise in June.
While the U.S. labor market continues to gain strength, inflation remains below the American central bank’s 2 percent target.
Investors were also digesting new data showing U.S. economic growth braked sharply to its slowest pace in two years as consumer spending softened and a strong dollar continued to undercut exports, but a pickup in activity is anticipated by many given the buoyant labor market.
Gross domestic product increased at a 0.5 percent annual rate in the first quarter of 2016, its slowest since the Q1 of 2014, the U.S. Commerce Department said in its advance estimate Thursday, as businesses doubled down on efforts to cut the amount of unwanted merchandise clogging up their warehouses.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average and Standard & Poor’s 500 index closed slightly higher Wednesday, while the Nasdaq Composite index was dragged down by Apple’s disappointing earnings report.
Q1 corporate earnings are expected to fall 6.9 percent, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Facebook shares jumped 9.4 percent to $119.15 in premarket trading and were set to open at a record high, a day after the company reported its revenue rose 50 percent.
St. Jude Medical soared 29 percent to $79.90 after Abbott Laboratories said it agreed to buy the medical device maker for $25 billion. Abbott sank 4.2 percent to $42.05.
Data from Reuters were used to report this story.