Is Silver in Mint Condition? First Majestic Silver Corp (AG), Vale SA (ADR) (VALE)

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4 Silver Miners That Pay a DividendEvery cloud has its silver lining, but it is sometimes a little difficult to get it to the mint.

Don Marquis (Author, 1878-1937)

What’s up with silver and silver companies for 2013 and beyond? A look at past performance, as well as forecasts already made, is giving investors some indication. Is silver in mint condition, or are there caveats to consider before taking a shine to a major silver company?

5 things for investors to consider concerning silver companies include:

1. Forecast Demand

According to a recent article on The Wall Street Journal‘s Market Watch page (Feb. 13, 2013, by Sara Sjolin), HSBC Holdings plc (ADR) (NYSE:HBC) sees demand for silver rising in 2013 and 2014. HSBC’S chief precious metals analyst James Steel believes silver prices will go up in the years ahead due to higher industrial demand, steady investor desire for hard assets, strong coin and bar purchases, and a bottoming out of demand for jewelry.

Good old supply and demand and the benefits for investors when they see silver prices rise. Moreover, David Morgan of noted in an article on the site (Dec. 12, 2012) that he expects this year to be a bullish one for silver prices. He also noted, “Paper currencies are losing value over time, and today even more significantly than ever before.”

2. New Silver Production

Investors may want to research companies who have new silver production, or production soon coming on line. First Majestic Silver Corp (NYSE:AG) announced in January 2013 that its Del Toro Silver Mine, located in the state of Zacatecas, Mexico, achieved initial silver production.

Keith Neumeyer, President and CEO of First Majestic Silver, stated; “The start-up of the Del Toro Silver Mine marks a very important milestone for First Majestic. This year, the Company will celebrate its 10 year anniversary by breaking through 10 million ounces of silver production as a result of Del Toro coming on stream.”

Of note for investors is the company’s aggressive growth policy. First Majestic is insistently pursuing their business plan of becoming a senior silver producer. They are working to accomplish this objective via the development of their existing mineral properties and the pursuit of additional mineral assets through acquisition.

3. Other Revenue Streams for Silver Companies

Silver Wheaton Corp. (USA) (NYSE:SLW) , the largest metals streaming company in the world, garners more than 90% of its revenue from the sale of silver. The Company has a portfolio of low-cost and long-life assets, which include silver and precious metal streams on Barrick’s Pascua-Lama project and Hudbay’s flagship 777 mine and Constancia project.

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