The junior gold companies - explorers and developers - haven’t gotten the same sparkle out of rising gold prices as the large producers, but a turnaround may be in the offing, says RBC Capital Markets analyst Michael Curran.
“We have been extremely disappointed to see the lack of participation in the recent gold price move form the junior gold space,” Mr. Curran says in a note to clients. While most of the larger producers hit 52-week highs in January, and again in recent days, Mr. Curran says the juniors have to look back to the spring of last year for their 52-week highs.
Mr. Curran sees one of two scenarios unfolding for the junior gold companies, both of which could lead to a turnaround: a gold price-driven late rally, or an increase in M&A activity. In the case of the latter scenario, the elevated valuations of the larger caps “will make acquisitions of the smaller cap laggards “very compelling.”
Included among Mr. Curran’s favorites among the junior gold companies are: Anatolia Minerals Development Ltd. (OTCPK:ALIAF), working in Turkey; Andean Resources Ltd. [AND/TSX], which operates in Chile; Banro Corp. (NYSEMKT:BAA), with interests in the Democratic Republic of Congo; Gold Reserve Ltd. (GRZ), an explorer in Venezulela; Greystar Resources Ltd. [GSL/TSX], operating in Colombia; and Osisko Exploration Ltd. [OSK/TSX], a Quebec-based explorer.