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Traders, wearing novelty 2014 glasses, trade at the closing bell on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on New Year's Eve in New York, December 31, 2013.
Traders, wearing novelty 2014 glasses, trade at the closing bell on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on New Year's Eve in New York, December 31, 2013.
(CARLO ALLEGRI/REUTERS)

Your biggest risk after a winning year? Overconfidence

There’s nothing like a bull market in stocks to get us thinking about how great we are as investors. But perhaps some self-deprecation is in order.

The S&P 500 rose nearly 30 per cent last year, turning in its best annual performance since 1997. Few people saw that coming: Wall Street strategists had been predicting gains closer to 8 per cent at the start of 2013, at the same time that sentiment among retail investors was split evenly between bullish and bearish, according to the American Association of Individual Investors.