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By Dan Culloton, Morningstar Column Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News
Jan. 17--The year just ended was a good one for exchange-traded funds. ETF assets grew by 47 percent to $222 billion, according to current figures in Morningstar's database. ETF purveyors launched dozens of funds, including groundbreaking gold and China offerings. The industry also buzzed with talk of creating other commodity-linked and even actively managed ETFs. Here's a look at some of 2004's trends, as well as a look ahead to 2005.
Among ETFs, performance mirrored that of the traditional fund universe. Value-oriented ETFs beat growth-leaning ones, though both styles gained. Likewise, …