Dion's Thursday ETF Winners and Losers

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

ETFS Physical Palladium Shares ( PALL) 4.3%

Gold and industry-linked precious metals are both finding strength amidst today's tepid market action. Leading the run higher is palladium which tends to move more wildly than other white metals such as platinum.

Today marks the first time since breaking down in early May that ETFS Physical Palladium Shares ( PPLT) has managed to breach its 50-day moving average.

United States Natural Gas Fund ( UNG) 2.9%

An optimistic storage report from the Energy Information Administration is providing the natural gas ETF with a nice boost today. Last week, natural gas storage levels saw an increase of 28 billion cubic feet. This number was considerably lower than the 34 bcf predicted by market analysts.

UNG is not the only fuel-tracking ETF powering higher today. The United States Oil Fund ( USO) is also jumping today. This week, a number of oil majors such as Exxon Mobil ( XOM) and ConocoPhillips ( COP) have reported strong earnings.

iShares MSCI Austria Investable Market Index Fund ( EWO) 1.5%

Throughout July, Austria's markets have staged an impressive rally as concerns regarding the euro's debt crisis subside.

In the throes of the panic, Austria was singled out as vulnerable due to its financial industry's heavy exposure to emerging Eastern European nations. EWO, boasting nearly 40% exposure to financials, tumbled accordingly.

Losers

SPDR S&P Semiconductor ETF ( XSD) -2.8%

Semiconductor ETFs are struggling today amidst broad tech weakness. Pulling the industry lower are companies such as Nvidia ( NVDA) and Symantec ( SYMC) which are both down over 9% in early afternoon trading.

NVDA and Atheros Communications ( ATHR) are two of the biggest laggards in XSD. ATHR is down close to 6%

PowerShares Dynamic Food & Beverage Portfolio ( PBJ) -1.4%

After staging an impressive run through mid April, the food and beverage ETF has struggled to follow through and has moved sideways since.

Today, cereal makers, General Mills ( GIS) and Kellogg ( K) are pushing PBJ lower. Kellogg is getting hit the hardest after cutting its 2010 outlook.

iShares Barclays 20+ Year Treasury Bond Fund ( TLT) -0.4%

Long-term Treasuries, as tracked through TLT, have struggled recently as investors opt out of defensive bond plays in favor of more risky asset classes. Since late June, this fund has bounced along sideways. Today, it is testing its 50-day moving average.

Given the volatile nature of the markets, defense should not ever be entirely abandoned. Bond funds such as TLT will continue to provide stability when markets get jittery.

All prices as of 2:13 PM EST

-- Written by Don Dion in Williamstown, Mass.

At the time of publication, Dion Money Management did not own 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.

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