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The Best and Worst of 2015


2015 was a strange year in the market.  It is the first time the Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the year down since 2008.  And handfull of stocks went really, really high, and the rest didn't do much of anything.  Balanced portfolios didn't make any money, target date funds didn't make any money, and the sectors that started the year hot didn't necessarily end the year that way.  Let's take a look at what the best and worst investments were in 2015:

  • Stocks
  1. Best: Netflix up 139.2%
  2. Best: Amazon up 122%
  3. Worst: Chesepeake down 77.5%
  4. Worst: CONSOL down 77%
  5. Worst: Southwest down 76.9%
  • Sectors
  1. 4 of the 10 major sectors of the S&P finished the year with positive performance
  2. Energy was not one of them, finishing dead last with a loss of -24%
  3. Consumer discretionary finished on top, up more than 8%
  4. Technology also fared pretty well, up 4.3%, but much of that was bolstered by the stocks mentioned earlier
  • Countries
  1. I bet you didn’t guess that Jamacia was the best performing stock market in the world in 2015!  Well, it was, with the market rising over 80%
  2. The worst performing country in 2015 was the Ukraine, which was down over -38%!
  • Commodities
  1. Best: Cocoa, up about 10%
  2. Worst: You guessed it, oil, down over -30%
  • Fund type: (based on Morningstar data through 12.31.15)
  1. Best: Large cap growth funds: up 3.6%
  2. Worst: Small cap value funds: down -6.7%
  • Allocation types:
  1. Best: Target date 2000-2010, down -1.18%
  2. Worst: Tactical Allocation, down -5.93%
  3. Moderate allocation funds down -1.95%
  4. Conservative allocation funds down -2.31%
  • Taxable bond funds
  1. Best: Preferred stock funds, up 3.18%
  2. Worst: Emerging market bonds, down -6%
  • Municipal bond funds:
  1. Best: High yield munis, up 4.09 %
  2. Worst: National Short funds, up 0.7%
  • Alternative funds:
  1. Best: Multicurrency funds down -0.12%
  2. Worst: Bear market funds, down -5.05%
  • Sector Equity Funds
  1. Best: Health up 8.05%
  2. Worst: Energy limited partnerships, down -34.75%