The silver price was under pressure in the first quarter of the year. While it managed to hit a high of US$17.54 on January 24, it declined 3.76 percent in Q1 to end the period at US$16.20.

As investors watch interest rate hikes, political uncertainty and a depressed dollar, they are slowly turning their direction towards the gray metal as a safe-haven asset.

As interest grows, analysts and industry experts believe that prices could increase later this year. With that in mind, it’s interesting to look at which silver stocks performed the best in the first quarter.

The list below was generated on March 28, 2018 using the Globe and Mail’s market data filter, and it shows the TSX-listed silver companies that have seen the biggest share price gains year-to-date. Only companies with market caps above $50 million as of that date are included.

1. Sierra Metals (TSX:SMT)

Current price: C$3.27; year-to-date gain: 10.10 percent

Sierra Metals is a Latin American precious and base metals producer. The company owns and operates three mines in commercial production: the Yauricocha Mine in Peru and the Bolivar and Cusi mines in Mexico.

In January, the company announced that they expect for 2018 silver production to range between 13.9 and 16.2 million ounces. The forecast range is a result of “increased throughput, production, and higher recoveries” at their Bolivar and Cusi mines.

At the beginning of February, the company released drill results of 1.58 percent copper, 99 meters with 1.48 percent copper and 44 meters with 1.04 percent copper at their Cuye zone, boosting “intercepted polymetallic sulphide mineralization containing high-grade silver, zinc, copper and lead zones over significant widths.”

2. SSR Mining (TSX:SSRM)

Current price: C$12.23; year-to-date gain: 9.29 percent

SSR Mining is an intermediate precious metals producer with three mines in the Americas. As of De