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Buy Gold to Defend Against Greece?

Cramer doesn’t think that Europe’s debt woes are a reason to sell North American stocks, but the ailing countries of Greece, Spain and Portugal may warrant a look at the gold miners.

After all, gold acts as insurance against both inflation and a volatile economy. It’s also one of Cramer’s big themes of 2010, as governments around the world continue to print money and devalue their currencies. And he has no doubt that the happenings across the pond will make people crave this precious metal.

Now, investors could play gold through the SPDR Gold Shares exchange-traded fund, which tracks the price of gold, or they could buy a miner like Agnico-Eagle Mines . Granted, these companies can screw up no matter how much the market’s paying for bullion, but they can also offer more upside when they boost their production.

Agnico-Eagle has been the poster child for both situations, Cramer said. Last year during the third quarter, the company saw mine shutdowns, delays, startup issues and higher cash costs, all of which can make a mining stock underperform the price of gold. But by the fourth quarter, AEM was back on track to double its production over the course of 2010 thanks to new mine openings.

Of course, the company reported its latest earnings today, and while gold production surged 105%, earnings per share came in well below the Street’s estimates: 14 cents versus 29 cents, respectively.

So what’s going on at Agnico-Eagle? Is this stock the right way to play gold? Cramer asked CEO Sean Boyd back to the show to find out. Watch the video for the full interview.

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