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Materials & Processing, Consumer Discretionary and Financial Services Sectors Have Led U.S. Small Cap Russell 2000(R) Index Gains in 2012 (as of 12/4)

SEATTLE, WA -- (Marketwire) -- 12/06/12 -- The Materials & Processing sector (+20.6%) within the U.S. small cap Russell 2000® Index has reflected the largest sector gain year-to-date through December 4, 2012, outperforming its parent index by 8.2%, as six of the nine Russell 2000® Index sectors returned more than 10% for this same time period. Additionally, the Consumer Discretionary (+19.9%) and Financial Services (+17.5%) sectors have experienced strong returns, outperforming the Russell 2000® Index by 7.5% and 5.1% respectively year-to-date as of December 4, 2012.

Conversely, the Energy sector of the Russell 2000® Index posted the only negative return year-to-date, reflecting a loss of (-9.0%) through December 4, 2012.

"Relative strength in the Financial Services, Consumer Discretionary and Materials & Processing sectors within the Russell 2000® Index indicated how more cyclically-sensitive industries have performed in this risk-on, risk-off environment," said Stephen Wood, Chief Market Strategist for Russell Investments. "Historically, small caps have anticipated market recoveries: while small caps have lagged thus far in 2012, should we see outperformance in these sectors it could be an indicator of investor confidence heading into 2013."

                                               YTD        QTD      November
                                             Returns    Returns      2012
                                              as of      as of     Returns
                                             12/4/12    12/4/12
Russell 2000 Index®                            12.4  %    -1.6  %    -0.7  %
Russell 2000 Financial Services Sector         17.5  %    -0.8  %    0.02  %
Russell 2000 Health Care Sector                15.5  %    -8.5  %    -0.2  %
Russell 2000 Utilities Sector                  3.3   %    -4.9  %    0.2   %
Russell 2000 Technology Sector                 4.3   %    -2.1  %    -0.4  %
Russell 2000 Consumer Discretionary Sector     19.9  %    0.4   %    -0.5  %
Russell 2000 Consumer Staples Sector           11.1  %   -0.04  %    0.2   %
Russell 2000 Materials & Processing Sector     20.6  %    2.9   %    -0.2  %
Russell 2000 Producer Durables Sector          10.4  %    2.4   %    -0.1  %
Russell 2000 Energy Sector                     -9.0  %    -6.2  %   -0.02  %

Source: Russell Investments

Nothing contained in this material is intended to constitute legal, tax, securities or investment advice, nor an opinion regarding the appropriateness of any investment, nor a solicitation of any type. The general information contained in this publication should not be acted upon without obtaining specific legal, tax and investment advice from a licensed professional.

Opinions expressed by Mr. Wood reflect market performance and observations as of December 4, 2012 and are subject to change at any time based on market or other conditions without notice. Please remember that past performance does not guarantee future performance.

The Russell Global Index includes more than 10,000 securities in 48 countries and covers 98% of the investable global market. All securities in the index are classified according to size, region, country and sector. Daily Returns for the main components are available here:

Russell Investment Group is a Washington, USA Corporation, which operates through subsidiaries worldwide, including Russell Investments, and is a subsidiary of The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company.

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