The Fed finished up their regular meetings today, just after the 2Q GDP numbers were released. Gross Domestic Product reports, a total measure of goods and services production, rose at a surprisingly robust rate of 4.0 percent. Most economists had expected a positive GDP number but somethinggdp up 4.0 percent closer to 3.0 percent, not 4.0. This just on the heels of 1Q GDP shrinking by 2.1 percent.

For those counting, that’s a 6.1% swing from the first to the second quarter. With the second quarter number, the economy has grown 0.9 percent for the first half of the year and is on pace to notch a 2.00 percent annual gain.

But why the swing? Typically such large variances in data reporting are the result of missed counts or bad numbers. A report showing poor results for one month and then surprisingly high results in the following month suggests that someone missed something the first time around and the more accurate numbers ultimately ended up in the report. With regard to the GDP, recall that the 1Q decline was attributed to bad winter weather. That’s sort of hard for some to swallow but harsh winter storms do put a damper on travel, close airports and make it difficult if not impossible for consumers to get where they need to go to buy things. That all makes sense enough but it’s also very possible there was some sort of miscount. Are the two numbers just an anomaly? The only way to determine that is to wait until 3Q GDP is released in late October. As for stocks, the Dow actually closed lower by 31 points. Interesting.

The Fed’s announcement after rounding up two days’ worth of meetings was pretty much on target as to what we predicted yesterday. Nothing really groundbreaking and the Fed will hold its course but keep an eye on employment and inflation data. The unemployment report for July will be released this Friday so maybe we’ll get an indication of any Fed moves but at this stage that’s about all we can do is wait, watch and anticipate.