For 25 years, Steven Halpern, editor of TheStockAdvisors.com, has surveyed the leading financial newsletter advisors asking for their favorite stocks for the coming year. This article is one of 100+ ideas in the Best Stocks for 2008 report.
"Mining is a tough business, with high capital costs and one in which, as the old saw has it, 'Murphy works overtime.' One way to mitigate the risk while remaining exposed to upside in resource prices is through royalties. Royalties come in all shares and sizes; they can be net or gross, fixed or sliding scale, and so on.
"International Royalty Co. has put together an extensive portfolio of over 60 mining royalties, most of which are on properties not currently in production.
"Its crown jewel, accounting for half the company's net asset value, is from a royalty on the world-class Voisey's Bay nickel mine in Labrador, Canada. Many of its other royalties are on gold projects, including its second most important asset, the royalty on Barrick's Pasuca mine in Chile.
"The stock sold off recently after the company raised money for a potential purchase of the royalty division of Newmont Mining; instead, the division was effectively IPO'd. But this decline makes ROY very inexpensive for a low-risk royalty company, selling at just over 10 times next year's estimated cash flow, much less expensive than other royalty companies.
"As metals prices continue to advance and more of the properties on which ROY holds royalties come into production, ROY will benefit tremendously, making it a solid long-term growth story as well as ripe for a rebound from oversold levels."