We're 10 days past the Winter Solstice and the days are getting longer. Before we know it, summer will be here - not soon enough for my taste. As we bid goodbye to 2011 there were several big events this year of note to investors:

The US Treasury was downgraded to AA from AAA by Standard & Poors. Moody's the other major ratings agency, did not follow suit. It was a big story that, in terms of rates and prices, ended up a non-story. Rather than rising, as some predicted, interest rates actually fell (as others predicted).

Stock markets went up and down plenty but didn't end up far from where they started. As of yesterday's close, the Dow was +6.1%, S&P 500 +0.4%, and NASDAQ -1.4%.

Apple's continued domination of technology made it the world's most valuable tech firm, briefly surpassing Exxon Mobil as the most valuable of all. The death of founder Steve Jobs was even bigger news, but thus far the transition to a new CEO has gone well for Apple.

The Japanese tsunami knocked US stock markets for about 5% back in March but we promptly recovered from both that and the late summer selloff.

Next week: we'll start off 2012 with some predictions for the new year.




(This article contains the current opinions of the author but not necessarily those of Brighton Securities Corp. The author's opinions are subject to change without notice. This blog post is for informational purposes only. Forecasts, estimates, and certain information contained herein should not be considered as investment advice or a recommendation of any particular security, strategy or investment product. References to specific securities and their issuers are for illustrative purposes only and are not intended and should not be interpreted as recommendations to purchase or sell such securities).