With gold's price continuing to flirt with the all-time high posted in March 2008, investors are understandably hesitant to dive into new positions. Although the macroeconomic landscape continues to point to further strengthening of the gold price, no one wants to be the last buyer in a stampede.
Although the long-term outlook for gold is clear and defensible, the short-term volatility in mining stocks can be absolutely gut-wrenching. Fools investing for the long haul may always be subject to the vagaries of market swings, but some measure of protection can be found by identifying relative values from within the universe of high-quality gold miners.
Looking back even further, Yamana shares remain 48% beneath the $19.47 peak they attained in March 2008 ... before the sector tumbled into an extended correction. Larger competitors Newmont Mining
Historical share prices by themselves say very little about present-day valuation, but in the case of Yamana, I think they speak volumes. Incredibly, Yamana shares closed at $12.96 on the last trading day of 2006. This predates Yamana's game-changing acquisitions, which sparked a massive production growth spurt, and helped to quadruple gold reserves from 4.5 million ounces to 19.4 million ounces.
Notably, the price of gold has appreciated 56% in the intervening period. Competitors such as Goldcorp