NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Don Dion posts his current insights on the stock, bond, commodity and currency markets in his RealMoney blog, anticipating which ETFs will be in play next.

In the following three blogs from the past week Don advised investors not to give up on a certain natural gas ETF, said to go with gold ETFs that are physically backed by the precious metal and commented on investing in the Internet revolution.

I Won't Give Up on FCG

Posted 03/05/2010 7:48 a.m. EST

Both the United States Natural Gas ETF ( UNG) and the First Trust ISE-Revere Natural Gas ETF ( FCG) moved lower this afternoon as investors digested the government's latest natural gas supply data. As of 3:30pm, FCG had dropped 2.11%, while UNG had fallen more than 3.8%.

Supplies of natural gas may not be dropping as quickly as expected, but FCG's going to be a hard habit to break -- and I'm not sure I'm ready yet.

Since I first recommended FCG last June , I'm sure that more than one of you has gotten sick of hearing about this particular basket U.S. of companies involved in the exploration and production of natural gas.

I'll admit it: My initial passion for FCG was partially fueled by my dislike for UNG. I've certainly beat that ETF's problems to death, but, suffice to say, I was disillusioned even before UNG started selling futures contracts to buy stocks.

I like the feeling of knowing that FCG tracks real, live U.S. natural gas firms, not a basket of derivatives.

(Disclaimer: I have been recommending AMJ , which is debt instrument comprising master limited partnerships. I still think the advantages of this product for income far outweigh the risks of the ETN structure.)

Over the past eight months, however, I've come to appreciate the elegance of FCG's equal-weighted methodology. This fund provides exposure to 31 natural gas firms (using four different screens to eliminate the crazies) and never puts all your eggs in one basket.

Since I first recommended FCG as an alternative, I've spent a lot of your time bashing UNG. For every time I've stripped apart UNG's strategy, however, I've taken time to appreciate the potential of the real-life U.S. natural gas firms that FCG tracks. FCG has renewed my faith in the natural gas sector, in drilling technology, in shale...

It hasn't hurt that FCG's gone up 29% since Jun. 18, 2009 while UNG has fallen nearly 77%.

I still think the U.S. natural gas companies look strong. It's not time to give up on FCG yet.

Stand By Your Gold ETF

Posted 03/03/2010 11:01 a.m. EST

Long-term investors in gold ETFs backed by physical holdings of the precious metal should stick to their guns, despite recent net outflows.

Recently released 13-F filings from December show that everyone, from George Soros to Harvard's endowment fund, was investing in gold late last year. Even sovereign wealth fund China Investment Corp. admitted it was a sizeable holder of the SPDR Gold Shares ETF ( GLD) in a recent report.

While these filings may reassure investors looking to scoop up shares of a bullion-backed fund, such as GLD, iShares Comex Gold ( IAU) or the new ETFS Gold Trust ( SGOL), a more accurate picture of interest in GLD comes from recently released fund data. Yesterday, the National Stock Exchange released February 2010 ETF fund flows, and GLD saw net asset outflows of $161 million. Even more interesting, GLD had $937 million in net asset outflows so far in 2010, after netting more than $7.3 billion in assets during 2009. This may indicate that, by the time we get to read 13-F filings from famous investors and institutions, many of them may have already reversed course.

However, when you're talking about a fund such as GLD, which I have recommended to investors for the long term, it's better to avoid the noise. When the 13-F filings were released last month, I urged investors to ignore the hype and buy GLD for the right reasons. I still believe in this message, despite news of the net outflows.

Not all physically-backed precious metals funds were dinged in February. SGOL netted $11 million in assets last month, while its newly launched sister-fund, ETFS Physical Platinum Shares ETF ( PPLT), bagged $60 million in net assets.

While gold investments are particularly difficult -- some investors will remember Krugerrands from the 1980s -- ETFs such as GLD offer solid, long-term exposure to gold for a diversified portfolio.

Revolutionary Trade

Posted 03/01/2010 03:17 p.m. EST

We're enjoying a golden age of the data-driven Internet, and it's not too late to get on board.

This Internet revolution is unlike the last. While investors wildly speculated about how much tech companies were worth during the Internet bubble, no one has to speculate anymore about how ingrained companies like Google ( GOOG), Yahoo! ( YHOO) and Amazon ( AMZN) are in American culture.

Just think of the daily activities now shaped by the Internet:

  • Want to buy a stock? Use an online broker like TD Ameritrade (AMTD) or E*Trade (ETFC). The floor of the NYSE looks desolate in the wake of an online brokerage revolution.
  • Traveling? Search for tickets at Priceline (PCLN) or Expedia (EXPE). Have you noticed how many people are bypassing lines at the airport by printing out their paid-in-advance tickets online?
  • Release your inner hypochondriac -- or investigate your stuffy nose -- using WebMD's (WBMD) database. (Who can afford health care anyway?)

Other than revolutionizing every corner of the marketplace, what do all of these companies have in common? Each one is a component of the First Trust Dow Jones Internet Index ETF ( FDN). FDN is up more than 2.5% today, and this portfolio still has room to run.

The best investments are the ones that you notice blooming around you -- the ones you don't need an expert to see or explain. FDN's portfolio is full of companies that you use every day in every part of your life.

-- Written by Don Dion in Williamstown, Mass.
At the time of publication, Dion owned IAU, PPLT and FDN.

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.

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