Gold fell steadily last week, before making a partial recovery on Friday. Gold for June delivery ended the week down by 1.4% at $1,574 per ounce.
Of course, the only practical way for most private investors to invest in gold is through exchange-traded funds. The largest gold ETF, the $63bn SPDR Gold Trust , slipped 1.1% to close at $152.81 on Friday, while London-listed Gold Bullion Securities fell 2.4% to $151.10 last week. So far this year, shareholders of Gold Bullion Securities have seen the value of their holdings fall by 5.8%, while the value of SPDR Gold Trust shares has fallen by 5.7%.
Gold's big movers
Many investors prefer to invest in gold-mining stocks, rather than gold itself, as gold miners are able to use their operational gearing to outperform the price of gold. Let's take a look at three gold stocks that outperformed the yellow metal last week.
Aureus Mining was up 4.0% to 40.3p last week after it announced that its plans to relocate two villages as part of the development of its New Liberty gold mine in Liberia had been approved by the country's Environmental Protection Agency. Aureus has now acquired the land needed for the new village and expects to complete construction of the 325 new dwellings in the third quarter of this year. Aureus Mining's share price has risen almost 10% over the last month.
Centamin (Toronto: CEE.TO - news) climbed 9.5% to 45.9p on Friday after non-exec director Mark Bankes purchased 30,000 shares in the company. The £12,876 purchase increased his holding by a third, to 120,000 shares. Centamin remains under pressure to clarify the situation regarding its mining licence in Egypt, which was subject to a legal challenge last year, but Bankes' purchase could suggest he believes that a positive outcome is likely.
Timmins Gold (AMEX: TGD - news) has gained 11.5% to $2.86 over the last month. Timmins' share price dipped almost 10% on Wednesday when its fourth-quarter revenue missed expectations, but both gold production and earnings per share were up by more than 10% from the same period last year, and the firm's share price immediately rose back to its previous level as investors topped up their holdings in the firm, whose main asset is the San Francisco mine in Sonora, in Mexico.
Further sector comment can be found at www.fool.co.uk.
> Roland does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article.