Barron's convenes a panel of stock experts every year to guess where the S&P 500 will wind up next year. It's a fool's game, but sometimes they happen upon a close number. 2012 was such a year. The experts on average predicted the S&P will reach 1,360, a tidy 12% gain from the date in mid-December 2011. Lo and behold, the S&P is holding steady this week at 1,450, which amounts to an even bigger 16% gain.
Every expert looked smart except the lone bear. David Kostin, Goldman Sachs' chief U.S. equity strategist, said stocks would flatline in 2012 and the S&P would finish at 1,250. The year was not for bears like Kostin. Fear not, he's making up for it with a bullish prediction for 2013: S&P 500 at 1,575.
It's been a strong year for stocks, and these ten Fortune 500 companies have outshined the broader market. Nearly all of them have doubled. From Bank of America to Whirlpool, here are the biggest winners.