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Dion's Weekly ETF Blog Wrap

Intel's announcement today has certainly seemed to pique investor attention: As the Nasdaq heads 37 points lower, Intel is still trading more than 1% higher. Macy's also announced a dividend hike in its earnings report this morning, which is a positive sign for the retailer's expectations.

I like the well-balanced iShares Dow Jones Select Dividend ETF (DVY) as an alternative to trying to guess which company will hike its dividend next. DVY's methodology screens for companies that have consistently raised their dividends and have proven to be reliable about dividend payouts over time. Top DVY holdings include Lorillard (LO), Chevron (CVX) and Entergy (ETR).

At the time of publication, Dion Money Management held DVY.

Looking for New Blood

Published 5/11/2011 12:17 p.m. EDT

As sinking commodities prices sideline the equity recovery today, it's a good time to look at some of the more promising new exchange-traded funds in the marketplace. While I've tried to cover recent launches without overdoing every new offering, there are a couple of new funds worth a second look in this environment.

The First Trust NASDAQ Global Auto ETF (CARZ), which launched Tuesday, fills an ETF industry gap in an interesting way. I first took an interest in the debut of an auto fund in October 2010 . While there have always been mutual fund alternatives, automakers like Ford (F), General Motors (GM) and Toyota (TM) have been overlooked in the ETF space. CARZ brings all of these firms together into one trading vehicle.

It's going to take a while, however, for investor interest in CARZ to rev up. The auto industry has been surprisingly strong in recent months, and hopefully renewed interest in these companies will help CARZ to become a viable, liquid ETF offering. For now, I'm cheering from the sidelines.

There's been a lot of talk about food prices in recent months as key commodities like corn and sugar make headlines. Americans are particularly concerned about food and gasoline prices, and funds like the PowerShares DB Agriculture ETF (DBA) and Market Vectors Agribusiness ETF (MOO) have helped to provide interesting angles on agricultural commodities. The Global X Fishing Industry ETF (FISN) offers a different perspective on food supply in its coverage of global fishing firms. Analysts are predicting that food prices will keep rising across the board and across the globe. FISN offers investors a way to track one portion of food providers.

Like CARZ, FISN is still getting started and struggling to attract investors. Keep an eye on these two funds as they begin to establish a track record.

At the time of publication, Dion Money Management had no positions in the stocks mentioned.
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