BALTIMORE (Stockpickr) -- As we tick closer to the end of the trading year, traders are still wondering whether stocks will be able to get their heads above water before the calendar ticks over to 2012.
Frankly, it's been tough going for investors in 2011. Everywhere you turn, there's a story about a legendary fund manager getting hammered or a rationale for why stocks are getting smacked lower. Year-to-date, the S&P 500 index has dropped by close to 4%, but along the way it's squeezed even bigger profits from both longs and shorts. And as we approach year-end, things aren't looking terribly auspicious for investors either.
But that's not exactly the whole story.
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