January is time to think about where to put my Roth IRA contribution. Last year, I split the contribution between Fidelity Contrafund and Vanguard Total International Stock Index. Previously I had done well with small caps and emerging markets so I was afraid they wouldn’t hold up. But actually those continued to do well (two different small cap funds were up 25% and 27% and an emerging market fund was up 20%) while large caps lagged (Contrafund earned 16%) and international stocks were troubled by Europe and the continuing recession (up 10%). Still, overall 2010 was a pretty decent year and just about everything did pretty well. I was thinking about looking for some mutual funds that lagged and therefore might do better next year, but I couldn’t really find anything that did that poorly. Japan has done really poorly for a long time, so I thought about putting money there, thinking they might be insulated from US and European economic troubles. I didn’t want to load up any more on small cap stocks, so in the end I put the whole thing into Vanguard Total International Stock Index again. Hopefully it will work this time.