Egypt and Kazakhstan lead world equity growth

growthInvestors would have made the most money in the first quarter by putting their cash in Egypt or Kazakhstan, according to MSCI indices.

Egypt returned more than 40% in the first three months of the year as the country's stock market recovered from a disastrous 2011 in which the value of the MSCI Egypt index nearly halved due to political turmoil.

The Kazakhstan index returned more than 35% in the first quarter as rising commodity prices gave a boost to companies extracting oil, gas, minerals and metals from the country.

The best-performing developed market was Germany, which returned more than 20% in the three months, followed closely by Singapore and Belgium.

MSCI said the first quarter was one of the best starts to a year since 2000 with only a handful of countries, such as Spain and Ukraine, returning negative growth. The MSCI World index returned nearly 11% and the MSCI Emerging Markets index, which includes Egypt, nearly 14%.

The MSCI Frontier Markets index, which includes Kazakhstan, did less well with 4%.

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