Pershing Gold Corporation (NASDAQ: PGLC) and Agnico Eagle Mines Limited (NYSE:AEM) are both basic materials companies, but which is the better business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their profitability, institutional ownership, valuation, risk, analyst recommendations, earnings and dividends.

Profitability

This table compares Pershing Gold Corporation and Agnico Eagle Mines Limited’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Pershing Gold Corporation N/A -43.00% -40.70%
Agnico Eagle Mines Limited 11.32% 5.38% 3.40%

Insider & Institutional Ownership

19.7% of Pershing Gold Corporation shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 59.1% of Agnico Eagle Mines Limited shares are owned by institutional investors. 39.8% of Pershing Gold Corporation shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 0.5% of Agnico Eagle Mines Limited shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Dividends

Agnico Eagle Mines Limited pays an annual dividend of $0.40 per share and has a dividend yield of 0.8%. Pershing Gold Corporation does not pay a dividend. Agnico Eagle Mines Limited pays out 36.7% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Pershing Gold Corporation has raised its dividend for 5 consecutive years.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Pershing Gold Corporation and Agnico Eagle Mines Limited’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Pershing Gold Corporation N/A N/A -$14.71 million ($0.59) -5.17
Agnico Eagle Mines Limited $2.21 billion 5.36 $932.83 million $1.09 47.00

Agnico Eagle Mines Limited has higher revenue and earnings than Pershing Gold Corporation. Pershing Gold Corporation is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Agnico Eagle Mines Limited, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Volatility & Risk

Pershing Gold Corporation has a beta of 0.93, meaning that its share price is 7% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Agnico Eagle Mines Limited has a beta of -0.72, meaning that its share price is 172% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent recommendations for Pershing Gold Corporation and Agnico Eagle Mines Limited, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Pershing Gold Corporation 0 0 3 0 3.00
Agnico Eagle Mines Limited 1 3 6 0 2.50

Pershing Gold Corporation presently has a consensus target price of $7.88, suggesting a potential upside of 158.20%. Agnico Eagle Mines Limited has a consensus target price of $55.50, suggesting a potential upside of 8.33%. Given Pershing Gold Corporation’s stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, equities research analysts plainly believe Pershing Gold Corporation is more favorable than Agnico Eagle Mines Limited.

Summary

Agnico Eagle Mines Limited beats Pershing Gold Corporation on 9 of the 15 factors compared between the two stocks.

Pershing Gold Corporation Company Profile

Pershing Gold Corporation is a gold and precious metals exploration company. The Company focuses on exploration, development and mining opportunities in Nevada. The Company is focused on exploration at its Relief Canyon properties in Pershing County in northwestern Nevada. The Company operates its business directly and also through its subsidiary, Gold Acquisition Corp. Gold Acquisition Corp. owns and is engaged in conducting exploration on the Relief Canyon Mine property in northwestern Nevada. The Company is engaged in conducting exploration on the Relief Canyon expansion properties. The Relief Canyon Mine includes approximately three open pit mines, heap leach pads consisting of approximately six cells, approximately two solution ponds and a cement block constructed adsorption desorption-recovery (ADR) solution processing circuit. The Pershing Pass property includes approximately 490 lode mining claims. The Company has not generated any revenues.

Agnico Eagle Mines Limited Company Profile

Agnico Eagle Mines Limited is a gold producer with mining operations in northwestern Quebec, northern Mexico, northern Finland and Nunavut and exploration activities in Canada, Europe, Latin America and the United States. The Company operates through three business units. The Northern Business consists of its operations in Canada and Finland. The Company’s Canadian properties include the LaRonde mine, the Lapa mine, the Goldex mine, the Meadowbank mine and the Meliadine project, and Canadian Malartic Mine. The operations in Finland include the Kittila mine. The Southern Business consists of its operations in Mexico. Its Pinos Altos mine includes the Creston Mascota deposit. The La India mine is owned by its indirect subsidiary. Its Exploration group focuses on the identification of new mineral reserves and mineral resources, and new development opportunities in gold producing regions. Its exploration activities are concentrated in Canada, Europe, Latin America and the United States.

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