Avoid what's trending. "Five years ago we had clients who wanted to invest in gold, because everyone was talking about it," says Stuart Blair director of research for Canterbury Consulting in Newport Beach, California. "We counseled them not to make an unnatural tactical play because if you get caught up in the excitement it becomes a problem. Shortly after that gold dropped off and equity markets took off like a rocket ship."
Conversely, he says many investors are overlooking emerging markets which have slowed their growth, but are still growing at a rate far greater than the rest of the world.
"We aren't saying that this is the year emerging markets are going to do well," he says. "But we believe long-term the emerging markets are going to return more than U.S. and international developed markets."