BOSTON ( TheStreet) -- International crises, especially the eurozone's debt quagmire, are holding sway on investor sentiment this year. Despite robust corporate earnings in the third quarter, poor performances by members of the benchmark S&P 500 Index predominate, as 319 companies are in the loss column so far in 2011.

The 10 worst companies have fallen by 57% to 69% this year, an eerily similar performance to 2008, when the financial tsunami gutted the U.S. economy and drove down the average stock on the S&P 500 by almost 40%.

The S&P index, which tracks the performance of the 500 largest U.S. stocks, is down 6% this year, even after an encouraging 11% rally in October, the benchmark's best showing since 1991. And over the past 12 months, the index has a mere 0.4% to show for its efforts, as it drags itself to a close for 2012.

Howard Silverblatt, a senior index analyst at Standard & Poor's, said in an interview that the financials sector has been hardest hit this year, losing 25% through Nov. 22, followed by materials, with a 15% decline. Industrials are down 11%.

Silverblatt notes that financials are off 66% from their high on Oct. 9, 2007, with the broader S&P 500 down 24% since then.

"Financials are still weighing down large-caps as the sector reacted to every event" both domestically and internationally, said Silverblatt, in a research note. He said the recent bankruptcy of brokerage firm MF Global ( MF) may have an even larger impact on major banks because it will prompt calls for stronger regulations.

The list of the 20 worst performers is dominated by financial-services players. Those just out of the top 10 include Genworth Financial ( GNW), Janus Capital ( JNS), Morgan Stanley ( MS) and Citigroup ( C), all down 48% or more on the year.

Surprisingly, many of the worst-performing stocks have garnered positive ratings from analysts, who apparently believe the worst is behind them.

In order of bad to worst, here are the 10 poorest-performing stocks in the S&P 500 Index this year:

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