Mining stocks have several benefits over physical gold investments. Firstly, paper-backed gold doesn’t need to be insured or stored in bank vaults. Conversely, a mining company’s stocks increase significantly higher than prices of spot gold. If you’re interested in making an investment in paper gold, here are 3 mining stocks to consider in 2014:

Harmony Gold (NYSE: HMY)
Harmony Gold were one of the most sought-after companies dealing mining stocks during 2011, being traded at $15.33 per stock. However, it got hit really hard when the U.S. Fed stopped the QE2 bond buying program. But everything is in the past now, since its shares this year have finally evened out and are being expected to increase by 47% this August.

Goldcorp Inc. (NYSE: GG)
Goldcorp Inc. has exceeded the expectations of mining investors this year by doing a great job of controlling its expenditures and altering its mine plans in order to have a more profitable production line. Investors believe that the company’s gold production this year could increase by more than 40%, and even reduce its gold mining costs to around $40 – $80 per ounce. Investors of Goldcorp Inc. are now being offered at a 2.1% dividend, and its consensus price aim is at $29.37.

Yamana Gold (NYSE: AUY)
Yamana Gold is a mining company known for declaring its reserves in a very conservative manner. Its production costs were reduced by a few ounces in 2013, and its resources continue to grow significantly every year. Now, its investors are paid a 1.4% dividend. Its consensus price target used to be at $11.44, but analysts at Morgan Stanley increased it to $12 a share, which represents a 41% increase from its current status.

Remember, mining stocks are great but they aren’t without risks. Mining company stocks shoot up when the precious yellow metal’s price increases, but that also means they fall 3 times faster if the price of gold decreases. In addition, the exchange rate of currencies can significantly affect the profitability of mines because of currency translation adjustments. Investors can find more information on buying gold mining stocks at Bullion Vault. Read up on the advantages and disadvantages of gold mining stocks over physical gold to get an idea on how both investments can affect your portfolio.