An under-covered segment of equities in the greater “Miner” space, that of Junior Silver Miners, has been on the move lately with ETF SILJ (PureFunds ISE Junior Silver ETF, Expense Ratio 0.69%) trading more than 75,000 shares last Friday versus its ADV of about 15,000 shares).
This particular ETF, which debuted in late 2012, is now firmly above both its 50 and 200 day moving averages, after recently trading below a $10 handle just in late May. “Silver Miner” focused equity ETFs are a small but growing segment and specific sub-category under the greater “Commodity Producers Equity” ETF space, and to further hone in on exposure, these “Junior Silver Miners” ETFs like SILJ have developed as well.
Competing ETF JUNR (Global X Junior Miners, Expense Ratio 0.69%), which is not “Silver Miner” pure, has an even smaller asset base at $5.4 million than SILJ which has about $6.4 million. Both Silver and Gold have rallied considerably from recent lows in early June to current levels, and this has no doubt helped to resurrect interest in the Miners in general, and for those willing to embrace greater amounts of risk in return for potentially greater rewards, Silver Miners including the Junior ones, have rallied.
Taking a closer look at SILJ, the equity exposure is specifically to Small (roughly 57% of the portfolio) and Micro-Cap names (43%), so it is intentionally structured as a higher beta way to play the space than say a larger cap slanted fund such as SLVP (iShares MSCI Global Silver Miners, Expense Ratio 0.39%) which has more than 41% of its investments held in large cap Miner stocks.
The largest “Silver Miner” specific stock, although it is not structured as a “Junior Miner” approach, is SIL (Global X Silver Miners, Expense Ratio 0.65%) which has pulled in a modest $14 million in new assets year to date, bringing its asset base up to about $228 million.