Why this gold miner is one of the few up this year

Talking Numbers

Gold and most gold miner stocks are down this year but one miner is starting to shine. Will it last?

Since the start of 2013, gold is down 20%. The story is even worse for gold miners when measured using the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (the GDX). That ETF is down nearly 46% year-to-date. But Freeport-McMoran, a mining company not in the GDX, is up nearly 7% since January 1st.

One of the reasons Freeport-McMoran isn't in the gold miners' ETF may have to do with the fact that it's not just a gold miner.

(Read: Gold retreats from 4-week high as investors cash in on rally)

"We have to remember that with Freeport-McMoran, a lot of their revenue this quarter came from their performance in copper," says CNBC contributor Gina Sanchez, founder of Chantico Global. "They were able to beat the market in terms of the price at which they sold copper, and they were able to produce it for less. That is a win-win scenario."

For the first eight months of 2013, Freeport-McMoran and copper traded nearly hand-in-hand. By Labor Day, copper prices were down 10% while Freeport-McMoran was down 11%. Since September 2, however, copper is up nearly 2% but Freeport-McMoran is up an astonishing 21%.

But recent performance doesn't mean the stock is in the clear, according to Talking Numbers contributor Richard Ross, Global Technical Strategist at Auerbach Grayson.

"While the technicals are dramatically improved over the last few months, there are still some serious concerns here for the stock from a technical basis," says Ross. He also believes other companies may be giving a clue as to where Freeport-McMoran is headed.

(Watch: Freeport-McMoRan a 'no brainer': Pro)

"Look at a proxy like Caterpillar, which came out with very disappointing earnings" says Ross. "Caterpillar makes a lot of the equipment. What does that equipment do? It mines for things, it digs, it unearths the types of things that Freeport-McMoran calls its business."

Ross says the technicals indicate investors should take profits here. On the fundamentals, Sanchez believes Freeport-McMoran has some potential.

Watch the video above to see the rest of the analyses by Sanchez and Ross and hear what the fundamentals and technicals have to say about Freeport-McMoran.

More from Talking Numbers:

Avoid this record-high stock: Strategist
Warning: Severe drop in Dow ahead: Technician

Everyone’s got it wrong on munis: Strategist


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