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Yamana Gold jumped 5%

- By Alberto Abaterusso

Yamana Gold (AUY) has reported preliminary results on production for the fourth quarter and fiscal 2017.

On Thursday, the stock closed $3.34 per share, up 5% on the New York Stock Exchange. Gold and copper production in 2017 exceeded guidance's expectations. However, production dropped compared to 2016 levels.

In the fourth quarter of 2017, gold production went down 3.7% to 259,000 ounces from the prior year's quarter, silver production was 28% lower with 1.17 million ounces and copper production decreased by 3 million pounds to a total volume of 34 million pounds.

In 2017, the miner also reported reductions in gold and silver productions compared to 2016. Total gold production was 977,000 ounces (-3.2%) and total silver production was approximately 5 million ounces (-29%). On the other hand, the production of the red metal increased by nearly 10% to 127 million pounds. (Data on production are from ongoing operations and exclude the Brio Gold asset.)

It should also be noted that declines in silver and gold productions were related to the sale of the Mercedes mine, which was completed in the third-quarter of 2016.

The following charts show preliminary Yamana gold, silver and copper productions over the last three years.

Below is Yamana Gold's preliminary silver production from 2015 to 2017:

Below is Yamana Gold's preliminary copper production from 2015 to 2017:

Investors need to pay attention to the increase in the company's production for 2018 as a result of operating improvements at the Cerro Moro high grade gold and silver mine.

At Cerro Moro, Yamana Gold has begun t he copper advanced sales program, which will strengthen the balance sheet and improve the overall financial situation of the company, according to Peter Marrone , Chairman and CEO of Yamana Gold.

The stock has a rating of 2.7. The recommendation rating ranges between 1.0 (strong buy) and 5.0 (sell).

With an average target price of $3.57 per share, analysts foresee a 6.9% increase in the current market valuation within the next 12 trading months.

Yamana Gold has a current market capitalization of $3.03 billion, a price-book (P/B) ratio of 0.72 versus an industry median of 2.01 and an EV-to-EBITDA ratio of -50.11 versus an industry median of 10.14.

For the 52-weeks through Thursday, Yamana Gold has climbed 5.4% and was outperforming the VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF (GDX) by 2.6%.

The 52-week range is $2.21 to $3.65.

The gold stock is currently trading above the 50, 100 and 200-SMA lines:

The stock reached overbought levels between Dec. 22 and Jan. 5. The RSI (14) line is down trending and is at 65.8 as of today.

Yamana Gold is currently reporting 948.43 million of shares outstanding, of which 99.8% is float.

The Van Eck Associates Corporation is the company's top institutional holder with 102,018,480 shares outstanding, as of Sept. 29.

(Disclosure: I don't have any position in Yamana Gold.)

This article first appeared on GuruFocus.