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Tickers in this Article: IAG, SVM, PAAS, AUQ, AU, MUX, BVN
The morning has been good for the market. The Nasdaq has climbed 0.6%; the S&P 500 has moved up 0.3%; and the Dow is up 0.3%.

Underperforming the market overall, the Gold and Silver sector (SLV) is up 0.1%, and these are its current biggest movers:
CompanyMarket CapPercentage Change
IAMGOLD Corporation (USA) (NYSE:IAG)$4.22 billion+2.8%
Silvercorp Metals Inc. (USA) (NYSE:SVM)$932.1 million-1.5%
Pan American Silver Corp. (USA) (Nasdaq:PAAS)$2.39 billion-1.3%
AuRico Gold Inc (NYSE:AUQ)$1.79 billion-1.1%
AngloGold Ashanti Limited (ADR) (NYSE:AU)$13.31 billion-1.1%
McEwen Mining Inc (NYSE:MUX)$600.9 million+0.9%
Compania de Minas Buenaventura SA (ADR) (NYSE:BVN)$8.65 billion-0.8%
Broker Summary: TD Ameritrade Thinkorswim

After an increase of 2.8%, IAMGOLD Corporation (NYSE:IAG) has reached a current price of $11.55. So far today, the company's volume is 1.4 million shares, 0.6 times the current daily average. High volume indicates a lot of investor interest while low volume indicates the opposite. Valuation ratios allow the investor to make a quick determination as to a company's investment value. The easy-to-calculate debt ratio is helpful to investors looking for a quick take on the leverage for a company. IAG has a low debt ratio of 19.1%. A low debt ratio means the company has more available cash flow. As with all financial ratios, a company's debt ratio should be compared with the industry average or similar companies.

Silvercorp Metals Inc (NYSE:SVM) has fallen 1.5% and is currently trading at $5.38 per share. The company's volume for the day so far is 488,712 shares. This is about the same trading activity as there was yesterday. Volume is an important indicator because it indicates how significant a price shift is. Investment valuation ratios can be very useful in estimating whether a stock price is too high, reasonable or a bargain investment opportunity. The price/book value ratio is one of the more common methods of determining whether a stock is fairly valued. SVM's P/B ratio of 2.15 shows that its share price is higher than its book value. This may be a sign that the company is overvalued. P/B value ratios are particularly useful to value investors, distressed or "vulture" investors, or any other investors purchasing beaten-down securities but are less useful to investors focused on growth stocks, purchasing IPOs, or investing in technology or other "asset-lite" companies. SEE: Using The Price-To-Book Ratio To Evaluate Companies

Falling 1.3%, Pan American Silver Corp (Nasdaq:PAAS) is currently at a share price of $15.44. So far today, the company's volume is 365,519 shares, 0.3 times the current three-month average. Volume is used to evaluate how meaningful the price movement of a stock is. Investors can make use of valuation ratios to estimate whether a stock is fairly valued. For investors primarily interested in the income a stock can generate, the dividend yield is an important determinant of how attractive a stock is. The dividend yield for PAAS is 1%, which is on the low end. This could indicate that that the stock is overpriced or that future dividends might be higher. Just as with the yield on a bond or certificate of deposit, the higher the dividend yield, the higher the return to the investor. SEE: Guide To Stock-Picking Strategies: Income Investing

AuRico Gold (NYSE:AUQ) is down 1.1% to reach $6.28 per share. The company is currently trading a volume of 1.3 million shares. As a stock moves up or down, it is important to pay attention to the trading volume. This indicates the level of interest: the higher the volume, the more the interest. Investment valuation ratios provide investors with an estimation, albeit a simplistic one, of the value of a stock. The price/sales ratio measures a company's stock market value by its total revenues or alternatively, a company's price per share by its revenue per share. The P/S ratio for AUQ is a high 5.61. This could be a good sign if the share price increases. It is important to compare P/S ratios for companies in the same industry, as ratios can vary quite widely for companies in different industries.

AngloGold Ashanti Limited (NYSE:AU) is trading at $34.35 per share, down 1.1%. So far today, the company's volume is 363,786 shares, 0.3 times its current daily average. Volume indicates the level of interest that investors have in a company at its current price. Looking at a company's valuation ratios is a good way of getting a basic idea as to its value as an investment. A simple P/E ratio can reveal the stock's real market value and show how the valuation compares to its industry group or a benchmark like the S&P 500 Index. AU's P/E ratio is 10.6. From the investor's perspective, a stock with a lower ratio is relatively cheaper than a stock with a higher ratio. SEE: Profit With The Power Of Price-To-Earnings

McEwen Mining (NYSE:MUX) has risen 0.9% and is currently trading at $3.31 per share. So far today, the company's volume is 358,158 shares. This is on pace to fall short of yesterday's volume of 1.5 million shares. Volume is also used as a secondary indicator to help confirm what the price movement is suggesting. It is important for an investor to estimate the value of any potential or existing investment; valuation ratios make this easier. The debt ratio measures the leverage of a company, and a company's leverage is a good way to assess risk. The debt ratio for MUX is a low 25%. This indicates that the company engages in conservative financing with opportunities to borrow in the future at no significant risk. However, one thing to note with this ratio: it isn't a pure measure of a company's debt (or indebtedness), as it also includes operational liabilities, such as accounts payable and taxes payable.

Compania de Minas Buenaventura SA (NYSE:BVN) has decreased to $33.73 per share, a 0.8% fall. With 174,188 shares changing hands so far today, the company's volume is 0.2 times the average volume over the last three months. In technical analysis, trading volume is used to determine the strength of a market indicator. When estimating the value of a particular investment, valuation ratios provide a good basis for assessing the value of an individual stock. The capitalization ratio is calculated by dividing long-term debt by the sum of long-term debt and shareholders' equity. The capitalizion ratio of 3.4% is on the low end. A very low capitalization ratio might be a sign that the company is stagnating and reducing the potential earnings for shareholders. The capitalization ratio is one of the more meaningful debt ratios because it focuses on the relationship of debt liabilities as a component of a company's total capital base, which is the capital raised by shareholders and lenders.

The Bottom Line The nature of the market is such that stocks will have good days and bad days. Daily stock performance should be weighed against historical performance and put in context of the market overall. Tools like valuation ratios and profit margins, however, are only as useful as the context you put them in; remember to take historical data and competitor performance into account.

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