Silver mining companies are engaged in the exploration, development, and production of silver. Many companies in the silver mining industry also mine for other metals, such as gold, palladium, lead, zinc, and others. Many companies in the industry own and operate their own mines and are directly involved in production. By contrast, streaming companies, as they are called, purchase silver from producers for the purpose of profiting from price appreciation.

Silver is considered a precious metal, as it's regarded as rare and carries a high economic value. It can be found in jewelry, coins, and also electronics, because it has the highest electrical conductivity of any metal. Like other precious metals, such as gold, silver is often purchased by investors as a safe haven in times of economic turmoil.

These are the 10 biggest silver mining companies by 12-month trailing (TTM) revenue. Some companies outside the U.S. report profits semi-annually instead of quarterly, so the 12-month trailing data may be older than it is for companies that report quarterly. This list is limited to companies that are publicly traded in the U.S. or Canada, either directly or through ADRs. Data is courtesy of YCharts.com. All figures are as of August 5.

Some of the stocks below are only traded over-the-counter (OTC) in the U.S., not on exchanges. Trading OTC stocks often carries higher trading costs than trading stocks on exchanges. This can lower or even outweigh potential returns.

#1 Industrias Penoles SAB de CV (IPOAF)

  • Revenue (TTM): $4.2 billion
  • Net Income (TTM): -$299.5 million
  • Market Cap: $6.5 billion
  • 1-Year Trailing Total Return: 80.4%
  • Exchange: OTC

Industrias Penoles is a Mexico-based mining company that engages in the exploration, extraction, refining, and sale of non-ferrous metals. It produces refined silver, metallic bismuth, sodium sulfate, gold, lead, and zinc. The company operates through the following business segments: Precious Metals, Base Metals, Metallurgical, and Others.

#2 Polymetal International PLC (AUCOY)

  • Revenue (TTM): $2.2 billion
  • Net Income (TTM): $480.0 million
  • Market Cap: $11.9 billion
  • 1-Year Trailing Total Return: 110.0%
  • Exchange: OTC

Polymetal International is a Russia-based company engaged in the exploration and mining of gold, silver, and copper. The company's mining projects explore and develop precious metal through four geographical segments: Magadan, Ural, Khabarovsk, and Kazakhstan.

#3 Fresnillo PLC (FNLPF)

  • Revenue (TTM): $2.2 billion
  • Net Income (TTM): $198.4 million
  • Market Cap: $12.7 billion
  • 1-Year Trailing Total Return: 127.7%
  • Exchange: OTC

Fresnillo is a Mexico-based holding company engaged in the exploration for and mining of non-ferrous metals, including silver, gold, lead, and zinc. The company operates mines in the Mexican states of Zacatecas, Durango, Sonora, and on the border of Chihuahua/Durango. Fresnillo also owns subsidiaries in South and North America.

#4 Pan American Silver Corp. (PAAS)

  • Revenue (TTM): $1.4 billion
  • Net Income (TTM): $0.7 million
  • Market Cap: $8.1 billion
  • 1-Year Trailing Total Return: 143.1%
  • Exchange: NASDAQ

Pan American Silver is a Canada-based primary silver producer that's engaged in the exploration, development, extraction, processing, refining, and reclamation of mineral properties. The company owns and operates silver mines located in Peru, Mexico, Argentina, and Bolivia, and has several development projects in the U.S., Mexico, Peru, and Argentina.

#5 Wheaton Precious Metals Corp. (WPM)

  • Revenue (TTM): $891.1 million
  • Net Income (TTM): $123.7 million
  • Market Cap: $25.3 billion
  • 1-Year Trailing Total Return: 117.5%
  • Exchange: New York Stock Exchange

Wheaton Precious Metals is a Canada-based precious metal streaming company engaged in the sale of gold, silver, palladium, and also cobalt. The company purchases precious metals produced from mines that it does not own or operate.

#6 Coeur Mining Inc. (CDE)

  • Revenue (TTM): $721.9 million
  • Net Income (TTM): -$298.4 million
  • Market Cap: $2.1 billion
  • 1-Year Trailing Total Return: 79.5%
  • Exchange: New York Stock Exchange

Coeur Mining engages in the exploration, development, and operation of silver and gold mining properties. The company owns mines throughout North and South America.

#7 Buenaventura Mining Co. Inc. (BVN)

  • Revenue (TTM): $678.0 million
  • Net Income (TTM): -$149.3 million
  • Market Cap: $3.2 billion
  • 1-Year Trailing Total Return: -20.5%
  • Exchange: New York Stock Exchange

Buenaventura Mining is a Peru-based company engaged in the exploration and development of mineral properties. It produces gold, silver, zinc, and other metals. The company also owns an electric power transmission company, a hydroelectric plant, a processing plant, an engineering services consulting company, and has non-controlling interests in other mining companies.

#8 Hecla Mining Co. (HL)

  • Revenue (TTM): $657.6 million
  • Net Income (TTM): -$91.2 million
  • Market Cap: $3.4 billion
  • 1-Year Trailing Total Return: 221.5%
  • Exchange: New York Stock Exchange

Hecla Mining engages in the exploration, development, and production of silver, gold, lead, and zinc. It produces lead, zinc, and bulk concentrates for custom smelters and brokers, and develops unrefined precipitate and bullion bars containing gold and silver for traders. The company operates throughout North America.

#9 First Majestic Silver Corp. (AG)

  • Revenue (TTM): $368.8 million
  • Net Income (TTM): -$75.8 million
  • Market Cap: $2.9 billion
  • 1-Year Trailing Total Return: 46.1%
  • Exchange: New York Stock Exchange

First Majestic Silver is a Canada-based mining company engaged in the exploration, development, and production of mineral properties. The company is focused on mining gold and silver throughout Mexico, including La Entcantada Silver Mine, La Parrilla Silver Mine, San Martin Silver Mine, and other operations.

#10 Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. (FSM)

  • Revenue (TTM): $245.7 million
  • Net Income (TTM): $17.1 million
  • Market Cap: $1.3 billion
  • 1-Year Trailing Total Return: 77.2%
  • Exchange: New York Stock Exchange

Fortuna Silver Mines is a Canada-based company engaged in the exploration, extraction, and processing of precious and base metals. The company's activities are focused in Latin America. Its assets include the Caylloma silver mine in southern Peru, the San Jose silver and gold mine in Mexico, and the Lindero gold project in Argentina.