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1. Silver Wheaton
Silver Wheaton

3-year average
Revenue Growth: 76%
Profit Growth: 340%
Total Return: 49%

It's a little-known fact that most silver is produced as a by-product of something else -- meaning the people who mine it don't actually want it. As a "silver-streaming" company, Silver Wheaton enters into silver-purchase agreements with miners where the company contracts to buy all or part of the mined silver. To date the company has signed 14 long-term silver-purchase agreements at roughly $4 an ounce. It's that simple - buy low, sell high. Silver Wheaton posted record sales and revenues in the first and second quarters and says it is on track for its "best year ever." -- Niamh Sweeney, contributor

Get stock quote: SLW
Revenue ($ millions): $771
Net Income ($ millions): $575
Sectors: Mining
From the September 24, 2012 issue.

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To qualify, a company -- domestic or foreign -- must be trading on a major U.S. stock exchange; file quarterly reports to the SEC; have a minimum market... More