Gold miners have had  impressive run, rallying after years of trailing gold bullion and the broader markets. With gold producers gaining momentum, investors may want to take a look at small-cap gold miner exchange traded funds as smaller firms can benefit from potential deals.

Larger mining companies are prioritizing profit generation over growth, pushing expensive expansion projects to the side, writes Liam Denning for the Wall Street Journal. However, large companies can still target junior miners to replenish their mining operations. [More Upside Looms for Gold Miners ETFs]

Many junior miners are small. For instance, the average market value of the Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners ETF (NYSEArca: GDXJ) stocks is less than $550 million. [Gold Mining ETFs Thump Physical Counterparts]

Additionally, small-cap valuations look attractive. When considering small-cap miners, their net asset value, which accounts for discounted cash flows from future production on potential gold in the ground, is a better measure of worth, and the majority of junior minors are trading at substantially less than one times this measure, compared to one to one-and-a-half times for most large miners.

Attractive small-cap companies for acquisitions include the Continental Gold (CNL.T), Premier Gold Mines (PG.T) and Pretium Resources, which have projects with higher-grade ores that are closer to completion or have existing infrastructure to diminish the need for additional development spending.

Other small miners with attractive projects in the works include Asanko Gold (AKG.T) Golden Queen Mining (GQM.T) and Orezone Gold (ORE.T).

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