2016 was another year of surprises which caused investment capital to slosh back-and-forth in the global markets. The first half of the year was marked by falling interest rates around the world, strong performance by emerging market stocks and high-yield bonds, and a pronounced shift toward dividend-paying companies in the U.S. The second half of the year was nearly the mirror opposite as interest rates jumped higher, money was sucked out of emerging markets, and U.S. investors shifted toward lower-quality, cyclical and smaller companies. We expect unpredictability to continue in 2017, particularly with a dramatically new U.S. administration. As investors, we must focus on what we know and can control. Specifically, purchasing high-quality companies that should succeed regardless of outside influences as well as holding a healthy cash reserve in case unexpected negative surprises emerge.