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I'm sure that I'm not alone in being glad to see 2011 appear in the rearview mirror. Perhaps I missed something, but it strikes me that it was a year when it mattered not a whit WHAT strategy was employed, if it worked for a while, if it didn't work for very long, if it forced investors and traders into an endless game of "catch up". A case could be made for christening 2011 the "Year of the Whipsaw".

In keeping with my practice of publishing quarterly reviews of my real money retirement portfolio, which I started at the end of Q1, 2011, here's how 2011 ended. As I've noted previously, and I state in my profile, the portfolio is of the absolute return variety, constructed to provide the following:

  • Generate high yield/income
  • Preserve capital
  • Increase capital

As of December 31, 2011, holdings and weights were as follows in descending order of weighting:

Holding: Weight: Change (Weight)

GIM (Templeton Global Income) 20.90 (-0.50%)

MMP (Magellan Midstream Part.) 8.82 (+0.25%)

TOO (Teekay Offshore Part.) 7.97 (+0.04%)

KMR (Kinder Morgan Mgmt.) 7.17 (+1.30%)

MO (Altria) 7.16 (+0.18%)

JNJ (Johnson & Johnson) 6.79 (-0.57%)

PVX (Provident Energy Ltd.) 6.36 (+0.58%)

STO (Statoil) 6.25 (+0.49%)

GG (Goldcorp, Inc.) 4.83 (-0.62%)

SDS (ProShares UIltrashort S&P 500) 4.81 (-1.14%)

HIX (Western High Income) 4.45 (-0.24%)

TEI (Templeton Emerg.Mkt. Inc.) 4.22 (+0.06%)

BIP (Brookfield Infrastructure Part.) 3.77 (+0.14%)

FTE (France Telecom) 2.09 (-0.31%)

OTC:ESCOF (Enel SpA) 1.88 (+0.55%)

Cash 1.34 (+1.04%)

O (Realty Income) 1.19 (+0.01%)

Despite some missteps on my part, as noted in the Q3 update, and an arguably tough market, the portfolio managed to post a yearly gain of +4.04%, while the market, as defined by the S&P ended up completely flat, and generated a yield of 5.90%.

Disclosure: I am long GIM, MMP, TOO, KMR, MO, JNJ.

Additional disclosure: I am long all securities mentioned in the article.