Ben Bernanke has a money machine: It's called the printing press.
Until recently, only central banks enjoyed the distinction of creating money. Today, with paper currencies in Europe and the U.S. under significant structural stress, gold and silver miners have themselves become creators of money.
Into this context for gold and silver, low-cost miner Goldcorp
A temporary work stoppage at port facilities in Argentina blocked copper-rich concentrates from the Alumbrera mine from setting sail, and an "inventory buildup" at Red Lake in Ontario widened the gap between production and sales. I now expect to see a modest discrepancy in sales from Yamana Gold
Goldcorp did suffer a more significant loss during the first quarter: It lost to Newmont Mining
Despite this symbolic setback, Goldcorp continues to hone its internal money machine. The all-important Penasquito project continues to ramp-up smoothly as we await completion of the mill's second sulphide processing line during the third quarter. This is music to the ears of investors in another money machine: Silver Wheaton
Silver Wheaton shares notched a noteworthy achievement of their own this week, surpassing their all-time high price from March 2008 with a coincident technical breakout above the spot price for silver.
Following a pair of aggressive and transformative acquisitions to build one of the industry's most impressive pipelines of long-term production growth, Goldcorp may not be as likely to trigger subsequent rounds of industry consolidation as cash-heavy rivals Barrick and Newmont. With assets that retain as much potential for organic growth through exploration as any miner I've scrutinized, however, I believe that Goldcorp will continue creating money with Bernanke-esque fervor.
Gold is a hot topic on the blogs at Motley Fool CAPS. Join the free service today and see just how many Fools are taking the long view when it comes to investing in gold. The "Gold" tag at CAPS lists 52 potential investments, and you'll find Christopher's comments on most of them.
Fool contributor Christopher Barker can be found blogging actively and acting Foolishly within the CAPS community under the username TMFSinchiruna. He tweets. He owns shares of Silver Wheaton and Yamana Gold. The Motley Fool has a gilded disclosure policy.