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Dion's Friday ETF Winners and Losers

The short-term volatility index and natural gas ETFs were among the few winners to survive today's big selloff.

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Welcome to Don Dion's Daily ETF Winners and Losers. Be sure to stop by each day to get a feel of who's winning and who's losing when it comes to ETFs.


iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN

(VXX) - Get Report


This shouldn't be a surprise. The volatility in the market since April means that for the past several weeks, VXX is often on the list of daily winners and losers. The gains today are impressive, but VXX is still more than 10% below its May high even though the S

&P 500 Index

is near its May low, as VIX Index is still well below the highs we saw last month.

United States Natural Gas

(UNG) - Get Report


For a long time, UNG could not catch a break. The fund suffered from contango that left it down considerably in the past year, even though the price of natural gas was flat. Although it's far too early to call a reversal, the fund has bounced recently, along with natural gas prices. UNG is up about 20% since May 20.

Since natural gas fell in isolation from oil and other commodities, it may also be able to rally in isolation. It's too early to say whether this is a trend or just a bounce, but if investors want to play natural gas,

First Trust ISE Revere Natural Gas

(FCG) - Get Report

is the better choice.

iShares Barclays 20+ Year Treasury Bond

(TLT) - Get Report


This is probably the most conservative contrarian play for investors expecting stocks to drop. The long dated bonds are more sensitive to changes in interest rates because a greater portion of the total return comes from interest payments.


iShares MSCI Australia

(EWA) - Get Report


The Australian dollar is getting clobbered and

CurrencyShares Australian Dollar Trust

TheStreet Recommends

(FXA) - Get Report

is down 2.2%, close to half of the losses in EWA. Hard assets are taking it on the chin today, with top EWA holdings

BHP Billiton

(BHP) - Get Report


Rio Tinto

(RTP) - Get Report

down 6% and 5%.

iShares MSCI Austria

(EWO) - Get Report


A second front has opened in the European sovereign debt crisis. The euro is getting tattooed today because of concerns that Eastern Europe is another weak link in the chain. Hungarian political leaders said the previous government lied about state finances and the country is in a Greek-like situation, although it says it can avoid a crisis.

Last year, eyes were on Austria because of weakness in Eastern Europe, since the Austrian banks have the greatest exposure to this region. An economic recovery and debt problems in Western Europe overshadowed the problems in the east, but now it is back on the front burner.

Market Vectors Poland



A common theme for the losers today is having a currency that is weak against the U.S. dollar. The situation in Hungary has hit Poland the hardest and the zloty is down about 3%. Poland may develop into a value play because its economy is strong, but its currency is going to suffer through the financial mess to its west and south.

Returns as of 2:25 PM

-- Written by Don Dion in Williamstown, Mass.

At the time of publication, Dion Money Management was not long any equities mentioned.

Don Dion is president and founder of

Dion Money Management

, 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.