NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Here are my weekly ETF winners and losers.
Market Vectors Vietnam ETF
A number of popular emerging market-focused ETFs managed to top this week's winners list. Among the biggest gainers were VNM,
iShares MSCI South Africa Index Fund
iShares S&P India Nifty 50 Index Fund
Although they struggled on Friday, Brazil-linked ETFs were standout performers throughout most of the past week. The
iShares MSCI Brazil Index Fund
Market Vectors Brazil Small Cap Index ETF
saw strong gains following the nation's surprise rate cut.
Investors should continue to approach the emerging markets with caution. Economic turmoil could make the road ahead rough for these inherently volatile countries.
Market Vectors Gaming ETF
Although the industry struggled along with much of the rest of the market heading into the long weekend, the gaming ETF's losses were not enough to pull the fund off this week's winners list.
While I would encourage conservative investors to steer clear of this concentrated product, the larger consumer sector may be a region to keep an eye on. Investors can capture a combination of consumer staples and consumer discretionary firms using a product like the
iShares Dow Jones U.S. Consumer Goods Index Fund
SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Equipment & Services ETF
Energy producers benefited throughout much of the past week as upward market action instilled some confidence in investors' minds. Heading into the long weekend, however, XES struggled and much of the fund's gains were wiped out.
In the event that XES continues lower over the next few days, investors may want to keep a close watch on the $31 area. During the month of August fund bounced off of level on two separate occasions.
ProShares UltraShort 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF
Long-term U.S. Treasuries continue to fall into favor as jittery investors work to arm themselves against the threat of market upheaval. In response, the inverse-tracking TBT has faced ample headwinds. Friday's losses pushed the leveraged fund to all-time lows.
Playing defense is essential in this choppy market. Keep safe haven ETFs like
iShares Gold Trust
iShares Dow Jones Select Dividend Index Fund
on the radar.
Guggenheim Solar ETF
Although the solar energy ETF managed to top the winners list last week, over the past few days the volatile product gave back a good portion of those gains. This type of back-and-forth action not uncommon for this fund and I encourage investors to approach this industry with caution.
Looking ahead, the macroeconomic turmoil in the developed world will likely weigh on solar stocks. While aggressive traders may find this slice of the energy industry exciting, long- term conservative investors should stick to the sidelines.
CurrencyShares Euro Trust
FXE started off the week on a strong note, powering to July and August highs. This point proved to be unsustainable, however, and the currency ETF spent the rest of the week treading lower.
The euro region's trials will likely continue to dominate headlines as we move into the next week. Conservative investors should look elsewhere for international exposure.
Written by Don Dion in Williamstown, Mass.
At the time of publication, Dion Money Management owned iShares Gold Trust, iShares Dow Jones Select Dividend Index Fund and iShares Dow Jones U.S. Consumer Goods Index Fund.