LONDON -- After peaking at the end of last week, the price of gold is little changed this week, at around $1,766 per ounce on the December futures contract. Wednesday's slide was quickly reversed, and the yellow metal is currently down just 0.3% on last Friday's opening price.
Of course, the only practical way for most private investors to invest in gold is through exchange-traded funds. The $63 billion SPDR Gold Trust ETF (NYSE: GLD ) has fallen by 0.4% over the last five trading days, while the London-listed Gold Bullion ETF (LSE: GBS.L ) , has fallen 0.6% over the same period. Both funds are up around 12% so far this year.
Gold shares rising
Many investors prefer to invest in gold mining stocks, rather than gold itself, as investing in miners offers the potential for leveraged gains on the price of gold. Let's take a look at some of this summer's biggest risers.
Investors in FTSE 250 (MCX) Egyptian-focused gold miner Centamin (LSE: CEY.L ) have seen the value of their shares rise by 40% to 90 pence over the last two months, after the company resolved a workforce dispute that stopped production at its Sukari mine and released a record set of quarterly results.
AIM-listed Patagonia Gold (LSE: PGD.L ) has gained 29% to 29 pence over the last three months amid rumors it could be a takeover target. Investors' confidence has been buoyed by an updated resource estimate for Patagonia's flagship Cap-Oeste gold and silver mine in Argentina, boosting gold resources by 24% to 1,197,000 ounces of gold above the 0.30 g/t cut-off.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the Atlantic, Coeur d'Alene Mines Corporation (NYSE: CDE ) has risen 65% to $27.80 over the last three months. The company, which mines both silver and gold, is generating lots of cash thanks to its three new silver and gold mines, which are in their first full year of production.
Shares vs. commodities
This is a key point to remember for commodities investors: shares in commodity companies have outperformed their underlying commodities many times over the last 10 years, thanks to their ability to magnify their gains through successful development of new resources. This free report from the Fool, "Ten Steps to Making a Million From the Market" contains some excellent tips on identifying and investing in potential multibagger shares, including resource shares like gold miners. I strongly recommend that you download it now, as it will only be available for a limited time.
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