All markets have disappointed of late, but that's especially true in the case of emerging markets. Even aside from the recent global sell-off, they have handed once enthusiastic investors sub-par performance for more than a year now. Moreover, these economies have proven vulnerable to the ills-especially inflation-that investors had thought they were immune to.

Some commentators and strategists point to such signs and declare an end to emerging markets as preferred investments. They recommend that investors rethink their allocations. Such warnings, though understandable, almost certainly go too far. No doubt emerging markets in coming years will fall short of their tremendous gains of the past 10 to 20 years. But ample reason remains to expect better performance there than in developed markets and, consequently, they deserve a place in investor portfolios.

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