Gold prices have risen by more than 18% since the beginning of the year. That includes a drop of 3% below its beginning price in January. At around $1,810 per ounce, gold is on a path to eclipse its 10-year high of $1,920 set in September of 2011.
At the same time, the S&P 500 index is down 1.4% for the year, after recovering from a drop to 30% below its value on January 1. Gold hit a year-to-day low on March 19; the S&P posted its low on March 23. Since March 23, the S&P 500 has gained 42% and gold has risen by less than 16%.
Interest rates in the United States are near zero, as they are in most parts of the world. No one believes rates will rise any time soon, as governments try to recover from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.
Add up trillions of dollars in new helicopter cash, low interest rates and booming demand from ETFs, and the formula is set for higher gold prices. That also would be a solid jolt for gold miners, most of which based their 2020 projections based on gold prices in a range of $1,100 to $1,200 an ounce. At $1,800 or more, gold miners’ outlooks going forward have to be pretty rosy. Here’s a look at five top five gold-mining stocks with a glance at three mining-related ETFs.
Kinross Gold Corp. (NYSE: KGC) is up 61% for the year to date and nearly 90% over the past 12 months. The company has operations in the United States, Canada, Russia and elsewhere. Proven and probable reserves of gold total 24.3 million ounces.
Kinross Gold stock closed Monday at $7.34 a share, down 3.8% on the day, in a 52-week range of $2.72 to $7.86. The high was posted earlier in the day. The consensus 12-month price target is $8.64, implying a potential upside of 17.7%. Kinross does not pay a dividend.
Barrick Gold Corp. (NYSE: GOLD) is up about 46% for the year to date and about 65% for the trailing 12 months. The Barrick merger with Randgold was completed in January, and the company now claims 31 million ounces of proven and probable gold reserves. The company operates six mines, all with reserves of more than 500,000 ounces of gold.
Barrick Gold stock closed at $26.13 on Monday, down about 3.6% for the day, in a 52-week range of $12.65 to $28.50. The consensus price target on the stock is $30.39, implying a potential upside of more than 16%. The annual dividend of $0.28 yields a meager 1.03%.
Newmont Mining Corp. (NYSE: NEM) is up more than 42% for the year to date and up nearly 58% over the past 12 months. The company reports more than 100 million ounces of proven and probable gold reserves, following the completion of its merger in April 2019 with Goldcorp.
Newmont Mining stock closed at $59.52 on Monday, down 3.8% for the day, in a 52-week range of $33.00 to $69.13. The price target on the stock is $73.22, indicating an implied upside of 23%. The annual dividend of $1.00 per share offers a yield of 1.62%.
Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd. (NYSE: AEM) has added about 5.5% to its share price in 2020 and more than 25% over the past 12 months. At the end of December 2019, the company reported proven and probable gold reserves of 22 million ounces.
Agnico Eagle Mines stock closed at $62.32 on Monday, down about 4.1% for the day, in a 52-week range of $31.00 to $69.66. The price target on the stock is $70.06, implying a potential upside of about 12.5%. The company pays an annual dividend of $0.80, for a yield of 1.23%.
Royal Gold Inc. (NASDAQ: RGLD) has traded about flat for the year to date, but it has added about 18% over the past 12 months. Royal Gold is not a mining company but an investor in the gold production stream and royalties of several mining companies around the world.
On Monday, Royal Gold stock closed down about 5.1% to $121.14, in a 52-week range of $59.78 to $139.63. The stock’s price target of $132.00 implies a potential upside of about 9%. The dividend yield is 0.88%, based on an annual payment of $1.12 per share.
The SPDR Gold Shares (NYSEARCA: GLD) fund has added 18.4% in the year to date and 27.5% over the past 12 months, while the VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF (NYSEARCA: GDX) has added 31% so far this year and 48% over the past year. The VanEck Vectors Junior Gold Miners ETF (NYSEARCA: GDXJ) has added more than 25% so far this year and just over 50% in 52 weeks.