Silvercorp Metals The silver mineral properties company reported last week third-quarter earnings of $20 million, or 12 cents a share, a decline from year-ago earnings of $29.1 million, or 17 cents. "Higher labour costs, withholding tax assumptions on repatriated funds and minority interest payments are responsible for the balance of the remaining US$0.13 decline in F2013 EPS," BMO Capital Markets analysts wrote in a Feb. 12 report. "These factors are also responsible for the decline in EPS forecasts in F2014 and beyond, and near and long-term CFPS forecasts." Shares of Silvercorp Metals were upgraded to buy from hold at TheStreet Ratings. Silvercorp Metals has a forward P/E of 12.37; the average for platinum and precious metals companies is 16.33. For comparison, First Majestic Silver ( AG) and Endeavour Silver ( EXK) have forward P/Es of 12.09 and 12.44, respectively. Of the seven analysts who cover Silvercorp Metals, four gave it a hold rating and three rated it a buy. TheStreet Ratings gives Silvercorp Metals a B- grade with a $8.15 price target. The stock closed Tuesday at $7 and has risen 9.37% year to date.