A Look Back at 2017

The most notable news of 2017 is probably the boom of the cryptocurrency market as Bitcoin, and other digital currencies surged in value. However, with so much focus on cryptocurrencies, it is easy to forget that other assets also performed well this year.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at how some of the asset classes performed for the year.


The best performing asset by far this year was cryptocurrency. Although still highly speculative and with its utility not fully comprehended, investors still flocked to this asset in the hope of making a quick buck. Many of them succeeded with most cryptocurrencies appreciating at a breakneck pace. Top amongst them is Ethereum, which gained more than 8000%. Litecoin took second place with a gain of more than 5000%. While Bitcoin, the most widely recognised crypto, gained a 1335% at the time of writing.

Government Bonds

The bond market once again continued its 30-year bull run. The biggest winners were Greek and Argentinian bonds. Greek government bonds performed especially well gaining more than 50% on average. Argentinian government bonds gained around 30%. Meanwhile, the worst performing government bond was from Venezuela, which lost more than 40% of its value due to the country’s economic collapse.


Equities continued its eight-year bull run in 2017 as most markets approached the year-end with gains. The Singapore market did particularly well during the year, gaining 18%. This contrasts with its historical average of 7.8% annual return. The S&P 500 index also reported strong growth at 20%, as at the time of writing. The best performing equities index was the Ukrainian Equities index, which returned a staggering 80% since the start of the year.


Palladium was the biggest winner in the commodities asset class as demand for pollution-control devices grew. Palladium gained 54% this year, some way ahead of the London Metal Exchange 3-months copper, which came in second at 29%. On the flip side, natural gas and sugar decreased this year by 27.5 and 25% respectively.

The Foolish bottom line

As we look back at 2017, we will most likely remember it for the rise of cryptocurrency, and equities extending their multi-year bull run.

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The information provided is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be personalised investment or financial advice.