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Formula fields and the sysmodstamp

I've noticed that if I update a field in a record there seems to be a delay in when the formula field is updated. After the original field is updated, the sysmodstamp is set.  During that time an Query api call will pick up the record with the new sysmodstamp, the new value for the original field and the old (unchanged) formula field value.
When the formula field is finally changed, the sysmodstamp field does not change again. This makes it hard to detect formula fields changes by exaiming the sysmodstamp field.
Is this expected behavior ? Are the any 'worst case' analysis on how long the delay could be to update the formula field ? Would the GetChanges API call pick up the formula field change (assuming the window starts after the pickup of the original change) ?

That doesn't sound right.  Formula fields are evaluated dynamically at query time, so they should be updated the next time you query them -- are you saying that the formula fields are retaining the old values even after you've committed changes to the source fields?

As Formula Fields are derived I would not expect them to update the sysmodstamp or to count towards getUpdated.