Dion's Thursday ETF Winners and Losers

The health care industry has been one region of the market that has held up today.
Author:
Publish date:

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.

Winners

iPath S&P 500 VIX Short Term Futures ETN

(VXX) - Get Report

2.2%

After starting the day on a strong note, all three of the major U.S. indices are now trading in the red. This type of swing is doing little to calm investor nerves, providing an ideal scenario for the fear-based VIX to see some gains.

Rather than trying your luck with VXX or other VIX-based products, investors should seek out defensive plays such as gold, bonds and dividend-paying equities to protect against market volatility.

Guggenheim Solar Energy ETF

(TAN) - Get Report

1.6%

The solar energy ETF has jockeyed back and forth all day. However, by early afternoon the fund was trading in solid positive territory.

Yingli Green Energy

(YGE)

,

Trina Solar

(TSL)

, and

JA Solar

(JAS)

have been three notable sources of strength throughout the day.

As I explained Wednesday, TAN's gains should be viewed with caution. Macro concerns facing the developed world still threaten to quell the solar industry's prospects.

iShares Dow Jones U.S. Health Care Providers Index Fund

(IHF) - Get Report

0.7%

The health care provider industry is one region of the market which has managed to maintain strength in today's market.

IHF has seen an impressive rise throughout the month of September, breaking through both its 50- and 200-day moving averages. While health care will certainly be a region of the markets to watch in the future, playing it will be tricky as companies find ways to cope with Washington's healthcare reform legislation.

Losers

United States Natural Gas Fund

(UNG) - Get Report

-2.7%

Within the energy realm, investors are seeing mixed performance. Oil prices are heading higher, as indicated by early strength from

United States Oil Fund

(USO) - Get Report

. Meanwhile, natural gas is getting knocked, leading UNG lower. The slide comes after the Energy Information Administration released its weekly storage report numbers.

iPath Dow Jones UBS Grains Total Return Subindex ETN

(JJG) - Get Report

-1.5%

Agriculture is seeing weakness today, with JJG

, iPath Dow Jones UBS Sugar Total Return Subindex ETN

(SGG) - Get Report

and

PowerShares DB Agriculture Portfolio

(DBA) - Get Report

treading lower.

The agriculture industry remains an interesting region of the market. Investors cautious of playing futures-based products such as JJG, SGG, and DBA may want to try the equity-backed

Market Vectors Agribusiness ETF

(MOO) - Get Report

.

Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF

(GDX) - Get Report

-1.8%

Gold prices are taking a breather from its staggering rally. This, in turn, is putting pressure on gold miners of all sizes. GDX and the small-cap

Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners ETF

(GDXJ) - Get Report

are both getting hit.

Today's dip should not lead investors to unwind their positions in either gold miners or physically backed gold products such as

iShares Gold Shares

(IAU) - Get Report

. With economic issues still facing many regions of the globe, the protection that comes with gold will continue to be popular.

All prices as of 2:15 PM EST

-- Written by Don Dion in Williamstown, Mass.

At the time of publication, Dion Money Management was long Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF, iShares Gold Shares and PowerShares DB Agriculture Portfolio.

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.