Dion's Thursday ETF Winners and Losers
NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Here are today's ETF winners and losers.
WinnersiPath Dow Jones UBS Natural Gas Subindex Total Return ETN (GAZ) 4.4%
ETFs linked to natural gas futures are seeing mixed action as GAZ heads higher and the United States Natural Gas Fund (UNG) struggles with slight losses. Natural gas producers are also benefiting in this market environment. Shares of the First Trust ISE Revere Natural Gas Index Fund (FCG) are enjoying their fourth consecutive day of positive action.
GAZ and the UNG have dealt with plenty of issues over the year. FCG is a far safer and more-reliable option for gas bulls.
iShares Dow Jones U.S. Home Construction Index Fund (ITB) 3.0%
For the third day in a row, the homebuilder-tracking ITB is securing substantial gains. This recent run up has been encouraging, helping it push back toward 2012 highs.
Like ITB, the SPDR S&P Homebuilder ETF (XHB) tracks a basket of companies hailing from the residential real estate industry. The fund is seeing some lag as the end of the trading day approaches.
Market Vectors Solar Energy ETF (KWT) 2.2%
A multiple month downturn pushed solar energy ETFs like KWT back to all-time lows. The fund's prospects are still weak considering the macroeconomic headwinds that plague the alternative energy industry, but in recent days, the selling has subsided a bit.
Funds like KWT and the Guggenheim Solar ETF (TAN) may be interesting to watch in the near term. However, investors should stick to the sidelines here.
LosersiPath S&P 500 VIX Short Term Futures ETN (VXX) -3.6%
With all three major market averages sitting in positive territory, the fear index is spending another session in negative territory. The past three days of losses have helped to push the VIX back below its 50-day moving average, and drive VXX toward April lows.
iShares Dow Jones Transportation Average Index Fund (IYT) -1.1%
The transports are lagging as we prepare to close the book on Thursday's trading session. Delivery giant, United Parcel Service (UPS) is doing little to inject confidence into IYT's index; thanks to a weak earnings report, the company is off 2.5%, revisiting levels last seen in March.
The persistently weak performance from the transportation industry has been an irritating quality of the market's early year rally.
iShares MSCI Spain Index Fund (EWP) 0.8%
After two days of pushing higher, the Spain ETF is retreating a bit. Other European Union-related ETFs are not faring as poorly; the iShares MSCI Italy Index Fund (EWI) was trading in relatively unchanged territory around midday, while the iShares Germany Index Fund (EWG) was actually seeing gains.
The situation in Europe remains tumultuous. Funds like EWP are not suitable for conservative investors.