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Top-performing Japan funds

An economic crisis in East Asia caused mutual funds that invest in Japanese companies to plummet for much of the past few years. But these funds came out roaring in 1999. The average return of 31 Japanese funds monitored by Morningstar topped 15 percent for the first quarter of this year.

Total return Fund name YTD 3-yr. Fidelity Japan Small Companies 41.8 -0.8 800-544-8888

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Warburg Pincus Japan Small Co 35.8 0.1 800-927-2874

Warburg Pincus Japan Growth 27.4 7.1 800-927-2874

Deutsche Japanese Equity A 24.2 N/A 888-433-6385

TCW Galileo Japanese Equities I 20.4 N/A 800-386-3829

T. Rowe Price Japan 19.3 -3.4 800-638-5660

Japan Fund 15.7 2.7 800-535-2726

AIM Japan Growth A 15.5 -0.3 800-347-4246

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N/A: not available, newer fund Source: Morningstar as of 3/31 close.