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Mickey Fulp, "The Mercenary Geologist", Informs Investors for Smarter Decisions - an Interview with Dr. Allen Alper

on 12/29/2009
Metals investing is not like investing in other types of stocks. To invest in a high tech stock or an automotive stock, so much of the investment's success is dependent on issues like innovation and the marketplace and the CEO's vision and the latest advertising campaign. How efficient are distribution systems? Can the market bear the price and the influx of product?

Investors who invest in metals must watch a different set of parameters. While some of the above parameters are important to them, other parameters come into play as well, including political ramifications, social trends, and even the purity of the metals and the accuracy of test drills and geological analyses.

As a result, investors who come over to metals investing – either as entirely new to investing at all, or new to investing in metals specifically – need to be informed, equipped, and empowered to make the right decisions and to act on the right information.

Mickey Fulp does just that. He is known as "The Mercenary Geologist" and his mission is to help investors gain the insight they need. He gives free audio commentary and free "Monday Morning Musings" market insights on his site, He says, "My goal is to educate the lay investor so he or she learns to do their own due diligence and their own research. If they do that, they can make better investment decisions." Mr. Fulp is quick to point out that, unlike some other newsletters who simply tell their readers when to buy and when to sell, he prefers to give investors the tools they need to make their own decisions.

His goal is to help both the individual investor, but indirectly to help the entire metals investment industry: "The idea is, better investors will make more money in the market and will continue to invest in the market, which will lead to higher volumes, higher market capitalizations, and a more robust stock market. It's a win-win situation."

Michael S. Fulp, who goes by "Mickey" – is a Certified Professional Geologist with a B.Sc. in Earth Sciences with honor from the University of Tulsa, and an M.Sc. Geology from the University of New Mexico. We have a mutual friend Wolfgang Elston who was Mickey’s economic geology teacher and served on his thesis committee at the University of New Mexico. Wolfgang received his PhD in Economic Geology before I did at Columbia University and visited me in the field in New Mexico.

Mickey truly is an expert in the field. He draws on 3 decades of experience as an exploration geologist searching for economic deposits in everything from base and precious metals to water, and his work has taken him all over the world. Along with actual "roll-up-your-sleeves" exploration, Mr. Fulp says, "a lot of that [experience] was spent in business development, evaluations, and mergers and acquisitions, so I've always had a very strong financial background, although I like to refer to myself as a field geologist." Besides providing free insight to investors, "a big portion of my business is mentoring (young geologists) and I like to give back to the industry that has given so much to me". Readers on his site will read about macroeconomics, commodities, geopolitics, libertarianism, and specific companies.

So, what can investors learn from him? Aside from reading his insight and learning to do their due diligence, they can follow his highly effective method of investing. "I put my money where my mercenary mouth is. When I write specifically about companies, they're companies I've gotten involved with before I write about them. They're companies I'm invested in and they are companies that I think can become two-baggers, five-baggers, even ten-baggers within twelve months."

We asked him to tell us more about his investment philosophy, which he hinted at above. He points out that it can be very effective in both bull and bear markets: He invests in stocks that he thinks will double within twelve months. Then, "when a stock doubles, I sell half so that I have zero cost basis... and then I go and invest in another stock that has the opportunity to double in the next twelve months."

So, what are some of the investments that Mr. Fulp is involved in? He told us, but he was also quick to point out that "these stocks have already had significant upswings in their valuation… so there is some downside risk." The stocks he's involved with in the rare earth element sector include: "Avalon Rare Metals, Rare Element Resources, and Quest Uranium. These are all three very good companies that have chances of making mines in the future."

In other sectors, Mr. Fulp talked about: "In gold, presently I cover Animas Resources in Northern Mexico; Eurasian Minerals, whose Haiti operation I visited in May and was very impressed with; and Lydian International." In fact, Mr. Fulp was attracted to Lydian International long before anyone else was: "At the time I started covering them, they weren't on anybody's radar screen. They now have a million-plus ounce deposit in Armenia. It's an emerging market country with a stable government and a geopolitical situation that we consider is worth the risk."

To summarize his position on the business he's looking for, Mr. Fulp says, "I'm interested in companies that can make world class discoveries. Geologists have trod over nearly the entire earth but in some areas they didn't turn over every stone, perhaps because geopolitical risk made it too difficult. So countries like Haiti and Armenia and the Balkans, and Indonesia are places where geologists with new ideas and new technologies still can find giant gold deposits."

"Another company I'd like to mention is Strathmore Minerals. They've been beaten down over the past year or so along with the rest of the uranium sector, but they are a development company with two of the most robust uranium deposits in the US… I love this company. They are undervalued compared to other [uranium] companies; they are very focused on their core assets. They've got another 20 properties that could be flagship properties and they intend to to monetize those. I'm very bullish on Strathmore."

So, how can investors benefit from this insight? We asked him about the pitfalls that a new investor makes and he said, "New investors don't make an investment after doing their own research… We often see that with retail investors who are dependent on a newsletter writer or a promoter to tell them what to buy. Investors need to be able to evaluate the company's share structure, the people, and the projects. Those are the three key criteria."

When we asked this already busy mercenary geologist what else he's doing, he tells us: "I am presently writing a book called The Mercenary Geologist’s Guide to Investing in Junior Resource Stocks." Presently it is made available via a chapter-by-chapter format on his website will It be edited and published into a book within the next year or so.

The Mercenary Geologist is a busy geologist, and an important educator with some powerful metals market insights!

Mickey Fulp welcomes your comments and questions:


Referenced in this interview


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