5 things we've learned so far from a weird 2016

Weak earnings to hit multiple sectors

If we've learned anything so far in 2016, it's that we still have a lot to learn about how financial markets are going to behave in a new monetary era.

What was supposed to work — bank and consumer discretionary and others that benefit in a rising rate environment — has not. What wasn't supposed to work — gold and utilities — has done well.

In other words, forget what you think you know. If the early part of the year is any indicator, and history tells us it well could be, get ready for an unpredictable ride ahead.

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"It's a market where you probably should expect big ups and downs with some gains, but relatively muted gains," said Ed Keon, managing director and portfolio manager at QMA. "One of the things we've been urging people to do is be cautious about their expectations. If you think you're going to get a 10 percent average return on your stocks over time, that's probably a little aggressive."