3 UK Shares Will Rise When Gold Bounces Back

03/08/2013 7:00 am EST

Focus: GLOBAL

These three miners have all suffered recently as the price of gold has declined, but that slump looks to be temporary, meaning investors in all four plays should enjoy the resurgence, writes David O'Hara of The Motley Fool UK.

In the last 12 months, gold is down 9.3%. This has damaged the profitability of precious metals miners. But if gold can get back to its record highs, shares in these three companies could turn around fast.

Randgold
In the last three months, as gold has fallen 8.8%, shares of Randgold Resources (London: RRS, or GOLD in the US) have lost 18.7%.

Unlike some of the other large resource companies, Randgold is a pure play on gold mining. Like all such firms, its profits are geared to the price of the commodity it is producing. From a quick look at Randgold's recent trading update, a 10% increase in prices achieved would deliver an approximate 12% increase in gross profits.

The company recently announced a 25% increase in its dividend to shareholders, while profits and dividends are forecast to increase for the next two years running. Randgold shares are priced at just 10.4 times expected 2014 earnings.

Centamin
This company has suffered recently from some legal difficulties that forced production to be halted at its mine in Egypt. However, operations have been running again as usual since December.

These challenges mean that in the future, Centamin's (London: CEY) share price will be heavily influenced by risk perceptions, as well as the underlying gold price.

Analysts are forecasting 2013 earnings per share of 26 cents. This puts the shares on a 2013 P/E of just 3.1. Although there is significant political and market risk, that looks very cheap. Centamin is more about Egypt's future than gold's.

Antofagasta
This is the largest and most diverse of the three companies. Much of Antofagasta's (ANTO) production is copper, but the company does have significant gold operations. In the last three months, Antofagasta shares are down 16.9%.

In its most recent production report, Antofagasta announced that cash costs for the quarter were 14.3% ahead of last year. This could have a dramatic downward ratcheting effect on profits if output prices fall further.

Analysts expect 2013 EPS of $1.33, with a dividend of 49 cents. That equates to a forward P/E of 12.5 and a yield of 2.9%.

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