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The Top-Performing Stock Funds of 2022

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Related: These 15 Funds Have Created the Most Wealth for Investors: Morningstar

In 2022, only five out of 548 U.S. stock funds covered by Morningstar analysts posted positive returns. That represents an accomplishment in a year when the overall stock market is down by more than 20%, Katherine Lynch, a Morningstar data journalist, wrote in a blog post this week. Contrast this year’s performance with that of 2019, 2020 and 2021, when many mutual funds reported gains of 20% or more each year.

Soaring inflation, rising interest rates and fears of recession sent most of the market into negative territory this year. Only the energy and utility sectors showed positive returns, while the communication services and technology sectors turned in the worst performance.

These trends tended to benefit value funds, including dividend funds, and worked against funds focused on fast-growing stocks.

Returns for the three- and five-year top performers were much more pleasing for investors. Thanks to big gains in previous years, some growth funds managed to gain top spots on the podium.

See the gallery for the funds with the best performance for 2022, as well as for five and three years. Morningstar analysts screened from mutual funds that have ratings of Bronze, Silver or Gold, and ranked performance using the lowest-cost share class of each fund.