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Winners changing quickly, so hedge your bets

Tacoma News Tribune – Changes in winning and losing investments have come so swiftly of late that you might not have realized your favorite approach has backfired lately.

International funds – the hot funds of the last few years – have turned more disappointing than U.S. stock funds. Gold has lost its luster or, more precisely, more than $200 since reaching more than $1,000 an ounce a few months ago. Oil is in a bear market – a decline of 20 percent or more. Small-cap funds, which typically would be shunned during rough economic times, have been on a roll.

The last few weeks have shown why financial planners try to discourage clients from loading up on a few winners while discarding everything else. They know that changes in cycles can come quickly, and without warning, turning winners into losers and vice versa.

Many analysts are confessing their surprise at the twists of the last few weeks. It now appears that the globe is not immune from U.S. economic problems, although that was a favorite theory until a couple of months ago.

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