Dion's Weekly ETF Winners and Losers

Editor's note: Don Dion is the president and chief investment officer of Dion Money Management and the publisher of the Fidelity Independent Adviser family of newsletters. He provides commentary on the financial markets, with a specific emphasis on exchange-traded funds and mutual funds to his clients and subscribers. He welcomes your comments at don.dion@dionmm.com.

Here's a look at my ETF winners and losers for the week.

Winners

iShares Dow Jones U.S. Healthcare Providers ( IHF) +5.67%

PowerShares Dynamic Healthcare Services ( PTJ) +5.10%

Barack Obama's health care proposals hit against the reality of a deep recession, high costs and reduced investor (and taxpayer) appetite for government debt. Senate plans with even higher costs put the agenda on the defensive, thanks to the estimates out of the Congressional Budget Office.

Federal intervention in the health care sector is a weight on health care stocks due to their uncertainty, even if higher spending should lead to higher profits for many firms. Nonetheless, the companies in IHF and PTJ are expected to be among those facing cuts, rather than spending increases. I covered the rest of the health care sector on Friday.

U.S. Natural Gas ( UNG) +3.34%

UNG garnered a lot of coverage this week. I wrote about it several times on Real Money, and Jim Cramer commented as well. There's also this article about the drawbacks of UNG, but regardless of its flawed nature, it rallied this week along with natural gas. Also see Cramer's take on this fund.

Natural gas was a winner while oil was a loser. The PowerShares DB Crude Oil Double Short ETN ( DTO) gained 9.28% for the week.

CurrencyShares Japanese Yen ( FXY) +2.22%

The Japanese yen resumed its inverse correlation with the S&P 500 index last week, as it gained vs. a 2.67% drop in iShares S&P 500 IndexTICKER TYPE="EQUITY" SYMBOL="IVV" EXCHANGE="NYSE" PRIMARY="NO"/>. Investors poured into the yen, or rather, poured out of their yen short positions in 2008, as it was one of only a handful of assets to rally during the financial panic.

Losers

Market Vectors Coal ( KOL) 12.18%

First Trust ISE-Revere Natural Gas ( FCG) -10.98%

Market Vectors Russia ( RSX) -10.46%

iShares Dow Jones U.S. Oil Equipment ( IEZ) -10.20%

Claymore/Delta Global Shipping ( SEA) -9.23%

Market Vectors Agribusiness ( MOO) -8.94%

Commodities headed lower on Monday during the broader market selloff, a day when the S&P 500 index lost 2.38%. Most continued falling through Wednesday, with some clawing back some losses at the tail end of the week. Oil-related ETFs such as IEZ had no such luck and fell for five straight days. Related ETFs, such as the resource-heavy (over 60% of assets) RSX and the resource transporter SEA suffered as well.

FedEx's ( FDX) earnings report also threatened a frost for some of the economy's green shoots on Wednesday, with implications for the transportation index. The resource and commodity ETFs are mostly running on economic optimism, and it will take more optimism or cheaper dollars to jump start this sector next week.
RealMoney Barometer Poll
1 What would best describe your stance heading into the coming week of trading?
Bullish
Bearish
Neutral
2 Which of these sectors do you think is set to move up in the coming week?
3 Which of these sectors do you think is set to move down in the coming week?

View the results without voting

At the time of publication, Dion was long the Market Vectors Agribusiness.

Don Dion is the 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.

Dion is also 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.

More from Investing

The Best Investment Advice? Stay Diversified

The Best Investment Advice? Stay Diversified

Attention 60 Minutes: Google Isn't the Only Big-Tech Monopoly

Attention 60 Minutes: Google Isn't the Only Big-Tech Monopoly

After PayPal Buys iZettle, Pay-Tech Firms Could Process These Deals

After PayPal Buys iZettle, Pay-Tech Firms Could Process These Deals

Listen: Should You Buy Cisco Now?

Listen: Should You Buy Cisco Now?

Amazon Could Devastate Walgreens and Rite Aid by Getting Into Pharmacy Business

Amazon Could Devastate Walgreens and Rite Aid by Getting Into Pharmacy Business