If your money was denominated in yen, you were in luck. Just like the two previous years, the yen was the strongest performing major currency against the U.S. dollar, up 4 percent. In fact, back in October, the greenback traded at around 75.5 yen per U.S. dollar, a record low.
In addition, the U.S. dollar index was up about 1 percent in 2011, mostly because of economic woes in the eurozone, which has taken a hit on its currency. Versus the U.S. dollar, the euro has depreciated 2 percent, followed by a 2 percent loss for the Swedish krona, and a 2 percent drop for the Canadian dollar.