Now that it appears that we have finally begun the long-awaited mega-bull run in Gold and mining stocks, it's a great time to revisit the best sources of information to make investment decisions.
Quality information comes in many forms. Some cost money,such as newsletters. Some are free, such as websites, chat forums and the media.
In terms of newsletters, I've subscribed to or have been familiar with at least a dozen. In fact, many months ago, I wrote a piece on 7 of them which can be reviewed by clicking here: http://markostake.blogspot.com/2010/01/looking-for-great-gold-newsletter.html.
In general, the opinions I expressed then I would maintain now, but I'd like to elaborate with some qualitative comments. For the purposes of full disclosure, I currently subscribe to two newsletters: LeMetropole Cafe (http://www.lemetropolecafe.com/) and Clive Maund (http://www.clivemaund.com/). Each is different and serves a different audience. Each does so, in my opinion, excellently.
Le Metropole is by far the very best value out there. It is written daily, and full of invaluable information. Head guru Bill Murphy is not only among the most knowledgeable and best connected people out there in Gold land, but his organization, GATA (http://www.gata.org/), is on the front lines of protecting investors from the shady back-room operators who routinely intervene in what should be free markets. I could write an entire essay on his efforts alone, but history will undoubtedly judge him as the most potent force in this market today.
Clive Maund writes a newsletter that is primarily technically oriented. While his technical analysis is often scorned by Gold's perma-bulls, who hate it when he gets bearish, he has, in my experience stayed intellectually honest and has been very willing to acknowledge his bad calls. Hey, even Marko's Take blows it!
Clive Maund also gives specific buy and sell recommendations and timing, which for most investors is what they need to make money. Unless you understand things like On Balance Volume and Candlestick charting, Clive's newsletter should be part of your information set.
In addition to these subscriber newsletters, there are a myriad of fine blogs out there. Of particular note are Jesse's Cafe Americain (http://jessescrossroadscafe.blogspot.com/) and Harvey Organ's The Daily Gold (http://harveyorgan.blogspot.com/). Other must reading includes Jim Sinclair's MineSet (http://jsmineset.com/) and a great site called Gold Tent: Poster's Paradise (http://goldtent.net/wp_gold/).
Sinclair is a legend in the Gold community and it amazes me that his site is still free. In Gold Tent, you'll find a large number of well-informed traders and investors with whom you can exchange ideas and thoughts in a mutually supportive environment. Unlike some other chat rooms, the decorum is kept very civil and participants politely exchange information rather than insults with whom they may not entirely agree.
In terms of Gold-Oriented web sites, the three that come to mind are Kitco (http://www.kitco.com/), 321Gold (http://www.321gold.com/) and GoldSeek (http://www.goldseek.com/). They serve as excellent clearinghouses of information and feature various news reports and newsletter writers.
The only information that investors should be truly wary of are the various reports of the major brokerage houses and credit rating agencies such as those that are issued by our friends at firms like Government Sachs (GS), Moody's and Standard & Poors. Study after study has shown that these firms are so full of conflicts of interest that the information they spread is anything but credible. You can be pretty-well assured that these reports are used to propagandize the firms' narrow self interests and NOT to provide a service to investors.
The other sites mentioned above have NO conflicts of interests and only prosper based on the quality of the information they provide. The major brokerage and credit firms, on the other hand, make money whether they're right or wrong.
As Labor Day weekend ends, the traditional summer vacation is over and markets will begin to get more active and, in all likelihood, we have a very interesting fall ahead of us. You know where we stand: stock market meltdown is uncomfortably likely and gold market meltup is dead ahead.
Before making any major investment decisions, consider all the sources of information that you have. The next several weeks are likely to be historically significant, and a chance to make a lot or lose a lot. Never underestimate the value of information. Toward that end, thanks for reading.