Trading Nation

The very contrarian case for gold miners

Trading the gold mining collapse

It's been a miserable few weeks, months and years for gold. But the companies that specialize in getting that gold out of the ground are doing even worse.

On Friday, the Market Vectors ETF tracking gold miners (GDX) hit an all-time low since the fund began in 2006. And while gold's slide has something to do with it, gold miners have had a bad time of it even in relation to gold.

Back in mid-2006, the ETF was trading at about 6 percent of the price of gold. Now, that's more like 1 percent.

That has some looking for opportunity.

According to Larry McDonald, head of U.S. strategy at Societe Generale, the selling in the GDX is "unsustainable."

"What you see in this sector is tremendous capitulation," McDonald said Thursday on CNBC's "Trading Nation." "When you have that type of capitulation, that amount of panic, isn't just not sustainable … so I think the gold miners are a buy here for a nice bear market bounce."

This isn't the first time McDonald has recommended buying the miners. He made a similar point about the GDX in November 2013, when the ETF was trading at nearly double its current value.

But McDonald doesn't claim to be a long-term bull.

That bounce he expects to see "must be sold," he said.

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