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Gold stocks have underperformed the large majority of asset classes over the past 12 months. As inflation surged in 2021 during the pandemic, Gold prices have remained suppressed.

Despite the current macro-environment, the Gold market’s performance has been highly correlated to the equity market. 

With inflation in the United States remaining elevated at 8.2% in September 2022, investors have continued to search for safe haven bids. While Gold’s performance has been lackluster over the past 12 months, it could provide for a great catch-up trade. 

Below we will present our 5 Best Gold Stocks to Buy in 2022!

Best Gold Stocks to Buy for 2022

1. SPDR Gold Shares (NYSEARCA: GLD

SPDR Gold Shares offers investors an innovative, relatively low cost way to gain access to the gold market. What separates GLD from gold mining stocks, is that it gives investors direct exposure to physical gold bullion. 

GLD is currently the largest physical gold ETF, with 49.51B in AUM. The ETF originally listed on the NYSE in November 2004, and has traded on NYSE Arca since December 2007. 

Although GLD is more expensive to own than iShares Gold Trust (NYSEARCA: IAU), GLD has more exposure per share of physical gold. Some of the largest hedge funds in the world own GLD including Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway and Ray Dalio’s Bridgewater Associates. 

The trust currently holds 922.59 tonnes of Gold in its reserves. This equates to 29,622,328.66 ounces

With elevated inflation across the globe, and rising geopolitical tensions with Russia and the Ukraine, now could be a great time to invest in Gold. If investors are looking for a relatively cost-effective way to invest into physical gold, GLD remains as a staple for the Best Gold Stocks in 2022. 

2. Barrick Gold Corporation (NYSE: GOLD

Barrick Gold Corporation is currently the second largest gold mining company in the world. They have mining operations globally in countries like Argentina, Canada, Chile, Australia, and the United States. 

Barrick Gold has both gold and copper mining operations with a broad portfolio that spans some of the world’s most abundant mining districts. 

Fourth Quarter 2021 Earnings Highlights:

  • Earnings Per Share (EPS), up 46% quarter-over-quarter
  • Net earnings rose to $726 million, or 0.41 cents per share
  • Returned $1.4 Billion to shareholders in 2021 
  • Announced new $1 Billion stock repurchase program 

Thanks to stronger production at Barrick’s Nevada mines, the company announced a $1 Billion share repurchase program. This was a result of significantly higher free-cash-flow and higher grade underground ore. However, the CEO has raised some concerns about Gold price inflation, expected to persist in 2022. 

Over the past 12 months, Barrick’s production fell by 6.8%, while production costs rose by 6.1%. The company’s copper mining operations have also faced pricing inflation, increasing by 17.5% in 2021. The company has announced an increase of its dividend to 0.10 per share, up 11% from the previous quarter. 

Despite rising production costs across their Gold and Copper mining operations, Barrick remains in a strong position amongst their peers. If you’re looking for a premier Gold mining stock to invest in, Barrick should be one of the first places to look. 

3. Franco Nevada Corporation (NYSE: FNV

Franco Nevada Corporation isn’t your traditional Gold mining company. The company does not operate mines, develop projects or conduct exploration. Instead, they are focused on generating revenue through a variety of different streaming and royalty agreements. 

Some forms of agreements that the company may engage in are net smelter return streams, net profits interests, net royalties interests, and working arrangements. The most common agreement is a streaming agreement. 

This agreement would involve the company providing upfront cash to miners to explore, develop and operate their mines. Then in turn, the company may be able to purchase all or parts of the mined asset at a discount. This agreement allows the company to fund the operations, while benefiting from the upside at a discounted rate through a contractual agreement. 

Third Quarter 2021 Earnings Highlights:

  • Revenue of $316.3 Million, up 13% year-over-year
  • Net income of $166 million ($0.87 per share), up 8% year-over-year
  • Generated $206.9 Million of operating cash flow for the quarter
  • January 27, 2022 declared a dividend increase of 6.7% to $0.32 per share

Franco Nevada Corporation is a very compelling Gold company in that they do not mine the asset directly. The company’s unique business model allows them to leverage the industry, while creating robusts cash flows from operations. They currently have no long-term debt and have been ranked the #1 Gold company by Sustainalityics for ESG standards. With Franco Nevada’s healthy business model, it is a top Gold company to keep on your radar in 2022. 

4. Newmont Corporation (NYSE: NEM

Newmont Corporation is currently the world’s largest Gold mining company. They have mining operations globally in countries like Australia, Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Ghana, Dominican Republic and Peru. 

Newmont has the largest Gold reserve base in the industry in some of the world’s most prolific ore body districts. The company’s core mission is to create value, while maintaining sustainable and responsible mining practices. 

Third Quarter 2021 Earnings Highlights:

  • Revenue of 2.89 Billion, down 9% year-over-year
  • Produced 1.45 Million ounces of Gold 
  • Generated $1.1 Billion in cash from operations, and $735 Million in free-cash-flow
  • Completed $99 Million of share repurchases from $1 Billion share buyback program 

Despite the company’s poor fiscal third quarter financial performance in 2021, it remains a top Gold holding amongst institutional investors. The company continues to generate robust cash flows from operations, delivering more than $2 Billion to shareholders through dividends and buybacks. 

On February 17th, 2021, Nemont announced a dividend increase of 38% to $0.55 per share. Their current payout ratio is over 80%, one of the most sustainable in the sector. With growing interest in Gold miners as geo-political tensions rise in Russia and Ukraine, Newmont is a top pick for 2022. 

5. Wheaton Precious Metals Corporation (NYSE: WPM

Wheaton Precious Metals Corporation is another company that doesn’t deal in the Gold mining business. Rather the company is focused on the benefits of streaming agreements with Gold and Silver mining companies. 

They are currently among the world’s largest Gold streaming companies, allowing for cost predictability and direct leverage of mining assets. These agreements often offer investors higher margins with lower risk exposure to the mining sector. Wheaton’s operations cover 24 mines and 8 development stage projects. 

Third Quarter 2021 Earnings Highlights:

  • Revenue of $269 Million, down 11% year-over-year
  • Record of $200 Million in operating cash flow for the quarter 
  • Signed a non-binding term sheet with Rio2, to enter into a precious metals purchase agreement 
  • Declared a quarterly dividend of $0.15 per share, an increase of 25% year-over-year 

Wheaton Precious Metals continues to generate robust cash flow from its operations. What separates them from their competition is that they make a number of different short-term streaming deals. They also have streaming deals that can last for the lifetime of the contract. 

Wheaton allows investors to participate in the Gold mining process, while reducing the potential downside risks of traditional mining companies. While the company seems to be overvalued compared to its peers, it’s one to keep on your radar as Gold prices move higher. 

Disclosure: The author holds a position in Barrick Gold Corporation. Freedom Stocks has a disclosure policy.

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