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10 Best Performing Markets of 2014

Where were you invested  in 2014? If you had been lucky enough to have exposure to mainland China stocks, healthcare or India your portfolio would have benefited this year

Emma Wall 30 December, 2014 | 12:20PM

Morningstar China Large Cap

This index returned an impressive 56% this year, flying largely under the radar of investors who are still spooked by the slowdown of the Chinese economy.

MSCI China A

This index measures the performance of Chinese “A shares” which are companies listed on the mainland. Until recently, foreign investors could access Chinese equities almost exclusively through the Hong Kong stock exchange.

But government initiatives, such as the 2013 expansion of the Registered Qualified Foreign Institutional Investor quota system and the launch last month of the Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect, which gives Hong Kong investors direct access to Shanghai-listed stocks, have opened up foreign investor access to mainland listed stocks, boosting these companies.

MSCI World/Biotechnology

Biotechnology investment has proved successful over the past 12 months; the Biotech Growth Investment Trust (BIOG) has increased in value 46% year-to-date. The sector has benefited from significant research and development and been backed by high profile UK equity income investor Neil Woodford.

FTSE EPRA/NAREIT US

This is a global real estate index that represents general trends in eligible real estate equities in America.

Morningstar Short-Only Commodity

As commodity funds and related equities were among the worst performers of 2014 it is no surprise that an index which shorts the asset – in simplistic terms bets against it – did well this year. A fall in the oil price from $110 a barrel to less than $60 played a significant part in disrupting markets this year.

MSCI Indonesia

Indonesia has been a net beneficiary of the falling oil price, reducing their import costs and boosting the stock market.

MSCI India

India has been one of most successful equity markets of 2015, buoyed by political reform and an increasingly stable economy. New Prime Minister Narendra Modi was appointed in May heading up the first single party parliament for 30 years.

Positive sentiment has since surged as Modi and his party tackled inflation and infrastructure and reduced the red tape stopping the private sector instigate their own reforms.

Morningstar Livestock Commodity

Until two months ago, Livestock was the best performing sector of the year, up 32% to October 2. Lean hogs and live cattle, the two commodities that make up the index, are experiencing a pricing boom thanks to a lack of livestock. A nasty virus has wiped out the porcine supply and cattle herds have been declining since the Seventies.

MSCI World Health Care

Several pharmaceutical companies announced better than expected results this year, boosting the healthcare index. The index is up 28% year-to-date, off the back of a strong 2013 where the market rose 37%. The index is predominantly made up of US stocks at 65%, topped up with megacaps from Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

Morningstar Large Core

The index measures the performance of large cap stocks that have exhibited average growth and value characteristics. There are 98 holdings in the index, all of which are listed in the US. The top 10 holdings account for 38% of the total assets and the top holding is Microsoft (MSFT). 

The information contained within is for educational and informational purposes ONLY. It is not intended nor should it be considered an invitation or inducement to buy or sell a security or securities noted within nor should it be viewed as a communication intended to persuade or incite you to buy or sell security or securities noted within. Any commentary provided is the opinion of the author and should not be considered a personalised recommendation. The information contained within should not be a person's sole basis for making an investment decision. Please contact your financial professional before making an investment decision.

Securities Mentioned in Article

Security NamePriceChange (%)Morningstar
Rating
Biotech Growth Ord876.50 GBX-0.17

About Author

Emma Wall  is former Senior International Editor for Morningstar

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