Investors Have Flocked Back to Stock Funds. Here Are the Winners and Losers.

Risk on! Much like the superhero Human Torch’s “Flame on!” battle cry, stock funds turned up the heat in the fourth quarter after investors’ hopes were doused in the third.

As worries about inflation began to subside in the quarter, the

S&P 500 index

surged 7.6%. Value stocks trounced growth again, with the

S&P 500 Value index

up 14% and

S&P 500 Growth

1.5%. Exposure to the winners was easily accessible for fund investors via the popular

iShares Core S&P 500

(ticker: IVV) and

SPDR Portfolio S&P 500 Value

(SPYV) exchange-traded funds. Still, for the entire year, the iShares S&P 500 ETF was down 18%, and the market got bumpy in December, falling 5.8% that month.