Farewell to the year of living turbulently

And so we have come to the last issue of Fund Strategy in what has been quite a year.

The eurozone sovereign debt crisis moved from the realms of the financial publications to mainstream news bulletins, America had its credit rating downgraded for the first time in history, and fundweb.co.uk was launched.

This week’s cover story, written by Tomas Hirst and Shaun Cumming, documents the main events of what can only be described as a turbulent year for markets.

To sum this up best, only five IMA sectors have thus far in 2011 managed to post a positive average gain, and none of them invest in equities.

Brian Tora notes in this week’s Trends that this year’s best-performing sectors (so far) were UK Index Linked Gilt, returning 20.65%, followed by UK Gilt, gaining 14.74%. (Comment continues below)

Those invested in Chinese equities have had a less fruitful year than in the past, with the China/Greater China sector propping up the table after a mean decline of over 22%, while Global Emerging Markets funds on average fell over 19%.

Over such a hectic period it is hard to pick out one key theme of the year, but a lack of political leadership would be one. The phrase “kicking the can down the road” became widespread as Europe’s leaders stuttered over how to best deal with the eurozone crisis, which eventually cost both Italy’s and Greece’s prime ministers their jobs.

Lastly, Fund Strategy would like to wish e.trader all the best in his retirement from Stella Asset Management. Since this magazine was launched in October 2000 we have been privy to his emails giving a behind-the-scenes look at the asset management world. I think we owe him a lunch…