NEW YORK ( TheStreet ) -- It may not be a three-to-one leverage, but large-cap miners Kinross ( KGC), Barrick ( ABX) and Newmont ( NEM) can offer investors leverage on a forward-looking basis. This according to Adam Graf, director of emerging miners for Dahlman Rose & Co.

Gold's spot price year to date has risen 0.9% and the popular backed ETF, SPDR Gold Shares ( GLD) has moved with it up 0.62%. By the three-to-one leverage standard, Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF ( GDX), a basket of large cap miners, should be up nearly 3% year to date. Instead the index is down 5.08%.

Out of the top 10 miners in the GDX only two stocks, AngloGold Ashanti ( AU) and Agnico Eagle ( AEM), have positive returns in 2010. With gold prices trading around $1,100 an ounce, mining stocks should be offering investors some kind of operating leverage.

In the interview that follows, Graf offers his take on the notion that mining stocks typically offer a three-to-one leverage to gold's spot price. He also names a few miners that still offer the most forward-looking leverage.

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