The booming stock markets of the past few years made it difficult for investors to be losers, according to Wall Street Journal. Of 62 categories of stock-focused mutual funds tracked by Lipper, 51 categories had double-digit returns for the year through Wednesday. An investor who invested $10,000 in U.S. diversified stock funds at the end of the last year was richer by about $873 on average, as compared to $687 in the year-earlier period.

International funds showed the highest gains among all mutual-fund categories. The top three funds were China Region Funds at 59.3 % gains, Latin America stock funds at 43.3% and Europe stock funds returning 33.5 %. Investors chased the performance and poured a record $154.4 billion in international funds through October. The figure is on track to surpass the $163 billion invested in these funds last year, according to Financial Research Corp.

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