I think we can safely say we are now almost four years into the most disrespected bull market in history, to borrow a phrase from Alexander Green. In a recent roundtable in The Wall Street Journal, the moderator opened the discussion by saying, “It’s been another very difficult year for investors.” Um, really? US stocks were up over 16% in 2012, and international equities did even better. If that’s a difficult year, I can’t wait for an easy one.

Indeed, last year was much kinder to investors than 2011, when the Complete Couch Potato returned just 2.36% and most of my other model portfolios did worse. In 2012, all of the model portfolios delivered remarkably similar performance, with returns between 8% and 9%.

The data below were gathered from fund websites whenever available: otherwise I used Morningstar. Returns for US-listed funds are expressed in Canadian dollars. Consider these unofficial results: when I have all the necessary data I will update the long-term Couch Potato performance report card. [Note: The updated report card is now available.]

Global Couch Potato (Option 1)
iShares S&P/TSX Capped Composite (XIC) 6.9%
iShares MSCI World (XWD) 13.5%
iShares DEX Universe Bond (XBB) 3.3%
Global Couch Potato (Option 2)
TD Canadian Index – e (TDB900) 6.9%
TD US Index – e (TDB902) 12.6%
TD International Index – e (TDB911) 15.5%
TD Canadian Bond Index – e (TDB909) 3.1%
Global Couch Potato (Option 3)
RBC Canadian Index (RBF556) 6.4%
RBC US Index (RBF557) 11.8%
RBC International Index (RBF559) 16.4%
TD Canadian Bond Index – I (TDB966) 2.8%
Complete Couch Potato
iShares S&P/TSX Capped Composite (XIC) 6.9%
Vanguard Total Stock Market (VTI) 13.4%
Vanguard Total International Stock (VXUS) 15.2%
BMO Equal Weight REITs (ZRE) 18.1%
iShares DEX Real Return Bond (XRB) 2.4%
iShares DEX Universe Bond (XBB) 3.3%
Yield-Hungry Couch Potato
iShares S&P/TSX Cdn Div Aristocrats (CDZ) 9.0%
iShares DJ Canada Select Dividend (XDV) 8.8%
iShares Global Monthly Adv Dividend (CYH) 9.5%
BMO Equal Weight REITs (ZRE) 18.1%
iShares S&P/TSX Preferred Stock (XPF) 11.1%
iShares DEX HYBrid Bond (XHB) 8.7%
iShares Advantaged US High-Yield Bond (CHB) 13.0%
iShares Advantaged Canadian Bond (CAB) 3.0%
iShares Canadian Fundamental (CRQ) 9.8%
iShares S&P/TSX SmallCap (XCS) -2.6%
Vanguard Total Stock Market (VTI) 13.4%
Vanguard Small Cap Value (VBR) 15.7%
iShares MSCI EAFE Value (EFV) 14.5%
iShares MSCI EAFE Small Cap (SCZ) 16.8%
Vanguard Emerging Markets (VWO) 15.8%
SPDR Dow Jones Global Real Estate (RWO) 21.9%
BMO Mid Federal Bond (ZFM) 2.8%
BMO Short Corporate Bond (ZCS) 3.6%