``Despite his reputation for high-risk strategies, his funds have generated spectacular returns for investors... The beginning of Sprott's love affair with gold began in 1999 when as a portfolio manager he saw the Nasdaq spinning out of control. "I had to assume when the mania ends you go into a bear market. So, I became a student of bear markets. How long does a bear market last? What do you do in a bear market? Unfortunately, bear markets last a long time. And the worst one was 1929 when history showed that the best thing to do was to buy gold and/or silver. You buy gold to protect yourself. So then I had to become a student of gold but luckily there were quite a group of active prognosticators who had done a lot of work on the gold market."''

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