The fourth quarter capped a blowout year for US stocks, which outpaced all other countries in performance (expressed in US dollars). Investors shook off their macro concerns about Washington dysfunction, debt and deficits, unemployment, rising interest rates, and foreign tensions – climbing the proverbial “wall of worry” and pouring money into stocks mostly through mutual funds and exchange traded funds. IPO’s staged a comeback. Bullish sentiment reigned at year end, recording the highest reading since October 1997. Internationally, returns ranged from -2% in emerging markets to +25% in Europe.