Cover of MoneyWeek magazine issue no 620

Our Christmas list

21 December 2012 / Issue 620

How to pep up your portfolio


  • Why Japanese stocks are finally headed higher
  • Will shale gas solve Britain's energy crisis?
  • France's wayward son flees to Belgium


The year the Fed went mad
We haven’t had a bad year at MoneyWeek. Gold hasn’t outperformed as much as we’d hoped. But it’s held up just fine and is sitting nicely in all our portfolios as a hedge against the nasties to come. House prices haven’t fallen as much as we forecast, but London aside they’re still falling in nominal terms at least, and so inching their way towards affordability.

The income-producing defensives we’ve urged you to hold for some years now outperformed in the first half, while the smaller caps and cheap European stocks we shifted some of our allegiance to in the summer have also done nicely. More investors now seem to share our concerns about ‘safe haven’ bonds – US Treasury yields have risen slightly and the FT notes there is “chatter building” that the great bond rally may be at a turning point.

But the best early Christmas present of all (for me at least) is that Japan looks like it is finally coming good. The Nikkei 225 is up 14.6% in the last five weeks, thanks to the election of LDP leader Shinzo Abe and his money-printing plans.

• Read the full editor’s letter here: The year the Fed went mad.