NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- You always seem to hear people talking about what the "smart money" is buying. After all, if you can get into the same picks as Wall Street icons Warren Buffett and Carl Icahn, you have a better chance of cashing in, right?

That's not always true. A look back at some of the publicly traded stocks linked to the biggest investors and entrepreneurs on Wall Street shows a number of miscues in 2010. While these stocks aren't perfect benchmarks of one icon's investing success or failure, they give an indication as to whether it was a good year or a bad year.

Here's how six of Wall Street's biggest names fared in the past year:

Buffett Beats the Street 3x Over

Folksy investing icon Warren Buffett had another great year, at least by the measure of his renowned Berkshire Hathaway ( BRK.B) stock. The Omaha holding company has racked up 20% returns year-to-date -- well over three times the S&P 500 index's gains in 2010.
Warren Buffett

It's no surprise the value investor did well this year, since many good companies were depressed to bargain valuations after the volatility of 2009. And if you're wondering what value plays Buffett has in his sights for 2011, a look at the latest changes in Berkshire holdings shows a concentration on financials and bank stocks.
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  • Carlos Slim Sees Fat Profits

    Mexican business tycoon Carlos Slim pushed out Bill Gates as the world's richest person in 2010, according to Forbes, and it's no surprise why. As the CEO of Latin American telecom giants Telmex ( TMX) and America Movil ( AMX), he has shared in the success of emerging markets big time.

    While Telmex has seen some earnings trouble recently and is lagging with 8% loss year-to-date, America Movil has soared 20% so far in 2010. That's over three times the broader stock market. What's more, Carlos Slim's global conglomerate Grupo Carso (GPOVY) has exploded late in the year -- racking up 70% returns in 2010 and over 55% returns since Aug. 1 alone!

    Jobs Rides Apple and Disney to Big Gains

    Apple's rock star CEO Steve Jobs is best known for his magic product launches and habit of micromanaging product development. But he is also a Wall Street heavyweight. As of the end of 2009, Jobs owned nearly 5.5 million shares of Apple ( AAPL) as well as 7% stake in Disney ( DIS) -- about 138 million shares, which he received in exchange for Disney's acquisition of Pixar in 2006.

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