U.S. Equity ETFs

Morningstar data that tracked U.S. stock mutual funds indicated that every category has posted double-digit gains with mid-cap value’s 16.5% advance leading the way. Small value funds had the best fourth quarter, up 3.8%, to finish the year up 16.1%. Overall, value-stock strategies beat growth strategies, reports Jonathan Burton for MarketWatch.

Small-caps ruled the ETF industry, gaining 17.1%, with the iShares Russell 2000 Index (NYSEArca: IWM)  gaining 16.7%, while the iShares Russell 2000 Value Index (NYSEArca: IWN), returned 18.1%. [ETF Spotlight: Small-Cap Value]

Also, mid-cap ETFs rose 16% with the SPDR S&P MidCap 400 (NYSEArca: MDY) up 17.8%.  Furthermore, large-cap ETFs gained 14.7% on average, but the broad-based Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF (NYSEArca: VTI), rose higher to 16.5% for the year. [Total Stock Market ETFs]

Overall, sectors that performed well include financials, up 24.5%, consumer cyclicals rose 22%, health care was up 21.7%, industrials advanced 19.3% while real estate funds gained 17.7%.

“If 2013 were to be a ‘normal’ year, U.S. equity returns would likely be good, but not great, as the S&P 500 would record a gain in the mid-to-upper single digits,” Sam Stovall, S&P IQ chief equity strategist, noted in a Jan. 2 research report.

Tisha Guerrero contributed to this article.