Cover of MoneyWeek magazine issue no 672

Place your bets

3 January 2014 / Issue 672

What to buy in 2014

PLUS:

  • Can stocks withstand the taper?
  • Six big surprises that 2014 could hold
  • The realty TV entrepreneurs taking America by storm

Excerpt

Merryn Somerset WebbEDITOR'S LETTER

Merryn Somerset Webb

What should you buy now?

Last year was fantastic for markets. Almost everything we suggested you buy (bar gold, which we rather assume you all hold already for insurance purposes) went up – in many cases by a lot.

The Japanese market was our standout, rising by more than 50%. But the European markets we have been nagging you into did brilliantly too. The US was up 25% and UK small-caps (which I favoured over large caps) rose 28%. But it wasn’t just markets that worked out in 2013. Many other things seemed to go right too.

China’s new leaders held an encouraging plenum and made markets happy with their super-sounding reforms; nothing nasty happened in Europe; growth returned to the US and the UK; house prices bottomed in much of Britain; and the Federal Reserve’s tiny taper didn’t seem to bother anyone much.

But while this is all nice, perhaps it was just too easy? As Peter Warburton of Halkin Services puts it: “if you were holding a King and a Queen, would you stick or twist?”

• Read the full editor’s letter here: What should you buy now?