The venture capital sector is heading back to Earth. The big question for the new year is how bumpy its landing might be.
A new set of data indicate that key segments in venture capital — the business of funding start-up companies — will be down sharply for 2015, a sign that the dramatic run-up in start-up valuations is peaking and the funding of new ones is tapering off.
"There are a lot of indicators that we've reached the peak of the VC investment cycle," said Daniel Cook, an analyst at New York research firm PitchBook Data Inc.
The number of "first financings," the very first round of professional funding for nascent start-ups beyond...