NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- ETF investors will be closely watching the latest GDP report, some key earnings reports in the health care and housing industries and the latest turn in the hostile takeover of Potash (POT) .
Investors poured into defensive positions including gold and U.S. Treasuries last week after being hit by a slew of poor economic data. The long end of the yield curve was a notable beneficiary, powering TLT higher, causing it to revisit levels last seen at the start of 2009.
U.S. Treasuries are sure to remain in the spotlight this week as market commentators prolong the debate over whether the Treasury market is in a bubble and investors prepare to digest another round of economic data. This week's numbers will include the second estimate for the U.S. GDP in the second quarter.
iShares Dow Jones U.S. Medical Devices Index Fund
On Tuesday, health care hungry investors will have their eyes locked on medical device giant
, which is slated to report its quarterly earnings report. Representing over 13% of the IHI total portfolio, MDT's quarterly numbers and outlook will have a big impact on the fund's performance.
The medical devices ETF has struggled to find support all summer as the markets continue weigh the overall effect Washington's sweeping health care reform bill will have on the industry.
Market Vectors Agribusiness ETF
The ongoing showdown in the fertilizer sector, along with the droughts threatening Russia's wheat crops, has placed the agriculture industry in the spotlight.
MOO will be an ETF to watch this week as its top holding
, which accounts for 10% of net assets, deals with a hostile $38.6 billion bid from
POT will also continue to explore the options it has for collecting offers from other bidders, as the company has stated that BHP's bid is grossly undervalued. POT's market value is nearly $44 billion, making it difficult for other constituencies, such as BHP rivals --
-- to finance a competitive counter-offer.
iShares Dow Jones U.S. Home Construction Index Fund
The housing sector and ITB will have its time in the spotlight again this week as the fourth largest holding in the fund,
, reports earnings.
Since the housing sector is closely watched as a barometer for the health of the American economy as a whole, the results are likely to not only have an effect on the other builders in ITB, but also on broader markets.
The relationship also works in the opposite direction, and as GDP numbers come out later in the week and those figures will also likely affect the outlook for housing.
iShares MSCI Japan Index Fund
While strength from the yen has placed a weight on Japan's Nikkei Index, the iShares Japan fund has managed to hold relatively steady, indicating an impressive amount of resilience.
Heading into this week, investors should keep an eye on Japan as the nation's government mulls the possibility of injecting another round of stimulus in order to jumpstart the nation's growth picture.
-- Written by Don Dion in Williamstown, Mass.
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At the time of publication, Dion Money Management was long iShares MSCI Japan Index Fund.
Don Dion is president and founder of
, a fee-based investment advisory firm to affluent individuals, families and nonprofit organizations, where he is responsible for setting investment policy, creating custom portfolios and overseeing the performance of client accounts. Founded in 1996 and based in Williamstown, Mass., Dion Money Management manages assets for clients in 49 states and 11 countries. Dion is a licensed attorney in Massachusetts and Maine and has more than 25 years' experience working in the financial markets, having founded and run two publicly traded companies before establishing Dion Money Management.
Dion also is publisher of the Fidelity Independent Adviser family of newsletters, which provides to a broad range of investors his commentary on the financial markets, with a specific emphasis on mutual funds and exchange-traded funds. With more than 100,000 subscribers in the U.S. and 29 other countries, Fidelity Independent Adviser publishes six monthly newsletters and three weekly newsletters. Its flagship publication, Fidelity Independent Adviser, has been published monthly for 11 years and reaches 40,000 subscribers.