By Jonathan Chen
Silver Wheaton's (NYSE:SLW) CEO Randy V.J. Smallwood is out with some interesting comments regarding the silver space and where he sees silver prices going.
In a Dow Jones interview, Smallwood said that he expects silver prices to be "well above" $50 an ounce in the next 2 or 3 years. At last check, spot silver was around $35, so this implies a rise of approximately 40% in the next few years, as currencies around the world weaken due to easy monetary policy, as well as strong demand for the metal. In the interview, Smallwood also said that he sees gold going to $2000 an ounce in the same time frame, which will pull silver up with it.
If silver stays in the range that it is now for the next year or so, Smallwood said that he expects deal in the space, which could be beneficial for companies like First Majestic Silver Corp. Ordinary Shares (NYSE:AG), and other smaller silver producers.
Smallwood said that he likes the U.S., Mexico, and Peru as places for silver mining, as the majority of projects are in North and South America.
The $11 billion company would use the potential price spike to build its war chest and thus buy smaller targets in an effort to expand its reach. It would also use the increase in cash flow to continue to grow its dividend, which it began paying earlier in the year. The dividend is 3 cents per quarter.
So how to traders play a potential spike in silver prices? Aside from going long the obvious Silver Wheaton, traders can also go long the iShares Silver Trust ETF (SLV), or a specialty ETF such as ProShares Ultra Silver ETF (AGQ). AGQ is a leveraged ETF, and can have wild price swings over the course of a few days or weeks, so traders need to be wary of this.
Other smaller silver miners could also benefit from a spike in prices, as the chances for being acquired become greater with higher silver prices.
Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.