NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Gold Fields  (GFI) stock is up 3.46% to $4.19 in early afternoon trading on Thursday as gold prices climb and support gold mining stocks.

Gold prices are gaining as U.S. stocks decline on Thursday, which has increased safe-haven investments in the precious metal, the Wall Street Journal reports. So far this year, gold prices have surged 18% due to market volatility. 

However, a strong jobs report on Friday could increase the likelihood of a Federal Reserve rate hike, which would hurt gold prices, according to the Journal. Gold struggles to compete with interest-bearing assets when rates are raised.  

Gold for April delivery is rising 1.34% to $1,258.50 per ounce on the COMEX this afternoon. 

Based in South Africa, Gold Fields operates eight gold mines in Australia, Ghana, Peru and South Africa.

Separately, recently, TheStreet Ratings objectively rated this stock according to its "risk-adjusted" total return prospect over a 12-month investment horizon. Not based on the news in any given day, the rating may differ from Jim Cramer's view or that of this articles's author.

TheStreet Ratings rates this stock as a "sell" with a ratings score of D. This is driven by multiple weaknesses, which we believe should have a greater impact than any strengths, and could make it more difficult for investors to achieve positive results compared to most of the stocks we cover. The area that we feel has been the company's primary weakness has been its decline in the stock price during the past year.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: GFI

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