Stocks to Energize Your Portfolio

Energy stocks that have performed poorly in recent years have now started to perk up. Buy some, but don’t go nuts.

Worker on the boat look at Oil and gas industrial platform in the gulf or the sea, The world energy of oil and gas company, Offshore oil and rig construction. Industry concept.
(Image credit: Chain45154)

If the energy sector tempted you to invest 10 years ago, you would have done better putting your cash under the mattress. The MSCI USA IMI Energy index lost an average of 0.2% per year over the past decade. That compares with a yearly return of 8.5% for MSCI's overall U.S. stock market index. And energy stocks were one-third more volatile than the market as a whole. High risk, low reward—not a great formula for investors. (Prices and returns are as of May 18.)

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James K. Glassman
Contributing Columnist, Kiplinger's Personal Finance
James K. Glassman is a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. His most recent book is Safety Net: The Strategy for De-Risking Your Investments in a Time of Turbulence.