2017 was a good year for equity investors. The UK was the laggard but even here, given the relatively high yield London-listed shares offer, total returns were acceptable. The other main regional markets got to similar positions to each other but via different routes. The US was the steadiest performer, as real growth picked up the baton after early Trump-related optimism was tempered by political realism. Europe picked up the pace after the relief of the elections in the first half of the year and was supported by good earnings growth thereafter. Japan was going nowhere until the autumn when an easing of North Korean tension and the re-election of Shinzo Abe boosted sentiment. Asia was the stand-out performer. This might raise alarm bells were it not for the low base the region was starting from.
It is hard to overstate the importance of diversification in an investment portfolio. Please click the below link to download Fidelity's full market & investment outlook for 2018.