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.
First Trust ISE Global Copper Index Fund (CU) 3.3%
CU and other metals-related ETFs including ETFS Physical Palladium Shares ( PALL) and Global X Silver Miners ETF ( SIL) are heading higher today, helped by broad upward action. The copper miner ETF has seen a jittery couple of days as the market's back and forth action raised concerns about the strength of the global economic recovery.
iPath Dow Jones UBS Cotton Total Return Subindex ETN (BAL) 3.4%
BAL and iPath Dow Jones UBS Sugar Total Return Subindex ETN ( SGG) are powering higher today. These two agriculture-related ETNs have been exciting to watch in recent months, thanks to their dramatic rallies. Long-term investors should stick to the sidelines with BAL and SGG. A fund such as PowerShares DB Agriculture Fund ( DBA) is more appropriate for conservative investors.
KOL and Market Vectors Steel ETF ( SLX) are two notable gainers today, riding higher along with the rest of the market. Looking ahead, investors with exposure to SLX should keep a close watch on the weather conditions in Australia. Violent flooding is threatening the nation's coking coal industry. It will be interesting to see how this affects top SLX components such as Rio Tinto ( RIO).
iPath S&P 500 VIX Short Term Futures ETN (VXX) -1.7%
After yesterday's shaky performance, the bulls are scoring a win. This upward action is restoring strength in investors, leading the fear-based VIX ETNs to tread lower. Today's decline marks another new all time low for VXX. iPath S&P 500 VIX Mid Term Futures ETN ( VXZ), meanwhile is flirting with previous lows.
Emerging and frontier markets hailing from Southeast Asia have seen wild swings recently, causing funds such as IDX and Market Vectors India Small Cap ETF ( SCIF) to behave in a volatile manner. On Tuesday, IDX continued to show weakness, gapping closer to its 200-day moving average. Investors should continue to exhibit caution when venturing into this region in the near future.
Luxury retailer, Tiffany ( TIF) started out the day on a strong note, lifting its fiscal year outlook. This news, however, was not enough to offset the less than optimistic report from the Johnson Redbook Index. According to Redbook, sales during the first week of January declined 0.5% from December. Despite today's downward action, XRT remains an attractive way investors can track the ongoing consumer recovery. All prices as of 2:15 PM EST