Some say, for good reason, that speculating in the junior resource sector is like gambling in a casino. I don’t disagree with that statement, but there’s one huge difference between the two: on the stock exchange, you can tilt the odds in your favor. How? By following the right people in the sector. We had a great collection of people at the Casey Summit in sunny Tucson, Arizona, that just concluded last week. Even though we’ve had many fantastic Summits over the years, this one was hands-down the best one so far. From Ron Paul to Don Coxe, the list of interesting speakers and the way the attendees could get access to them were next to none. If you weren’t able to be at the conference, I highly recommend the Summit Audio Collection, a full recording of the entire Summit. This conference was extra special for me, due to the impromptu Texas Hold ’em tournament late Saturday night. After Ron Paul’s talk, thanks to the incredible Casey staff who organized the Summit, a small group including Doug Casey were able to get a room with our own private bartender… and began our night of cards. Though the buy-in was not intimidating, the pot was more than enough to take the wife on a good shopping spree. As we rounded up our players, John Mauldin, the best-dressed man at the conference, had to bail on us at the last minute. His assistant told me that he had to attend an important meeting with a representative of brewer Dos Equis, which has been approaching John to become the brand’s “Most Interesting Man in the World” spokesperson. We then tried to get Ron Paul to play. He declined, but shared an interesting tidbit with us: that he helped put poker tournaments on national television. Now every time I see an exciting instant replay of an ace turned on the river, I will know whom to thank. The game itself was fun—but far less important than the personalities that were in the game. The table was crowded with extremely smart people, most of whom have been serially successful in the junior industry. Sitting across from me was my good friend Keith Hill, president, CEO, and director of Africa Oil, whose predictions for oil you can hear on our Summit panel “The Myth of American Energy Independence.” Keith’s exploits with various Lundin Group companies have taken him everywhere from the frozen lands of the Russian tundra to the plains of East Africa to look for oil. Having him at the table was a treat for all of us, and I learned long ago that you never bet against Keith, so I knew it was going to be a fun game. Beside him sat Nolan Watson, a member of our Casey NexTen list. In 2006, when Nolan became the CFO of Silver Wheaton, the largest silver streaming company in the world and worth billions of dollars, he was only 26 years old. He’s one of the most knowledgeable people on the planet when it comes to resource royalty deals and could easily hold his own in negotiations with any of the major mining companies. To the other side of Keith sat Amir Adnani, president, CEO, and director of Uranium Energy Corp. Amir, who’s also featured in our NexTen, is a member of our Casey Ten-Bagger Club (that means his company has handed our subscribers a +1,000% return). He refused to play, but said he wanted to watch. His reasoning was that he had assessed the situation and believed that the rest of us were better poker players than he… and he only takes on endeavors where he feels he has a strategic advantage. Amir is definitely one to pick his battles carefully, which shows in his business strategy as well. To my right was Brian Hunt, one of the brainchildren and stars of Stansberry Research… and beside him Doug Casey, probably the most experienced poker player you could come across in the natural-resource sector. Needless to say, the poker game was extremely intense and fast-paced: half of the original players were already out after the first hour. I managed to take Keith’s pot after another grueling 45 minutes, and only four of us were left: Nolan, I, Jordan Trimble, president and CEO of Skyharbour Resources, and Tim Termuende, head of Eagle Plains Resources. I know both Jordan and Tim very well, but I had never played poker against them—and I’d failed to pay enough attention to their habits throughout the night—which I later realized to be a huge mistake. The pot was building, and Jordan unexpectedly went all in. Nolan folded, and I was suddenly lost and had no idea what to do. With so much capital committed, I didn’t fold and called. To my dismay, Jordan had the better hand, doubled his pot, and put me on the back foot. I did end up clawing back for third and getting my money back, but more than anything, this poker game was a great investment lesson for me: Like poker, investing is about knowledge. The reason why I panicked when Jordan went all in was that I didn’t know his habits. Similarly, by getting really familiar with a few companies, we are able to feel their “pulse” and analyze everything from their trading pattern to the probability of success on their next drill well. You can’t throw good money after bad—my biggest mistake came from my one mental lapse in the night: “I have too much committed to fold.” In the junior market, where failures happen on a daily basis, you have to be able to pull your remaining capital out to fight another day. And the most important lesson of all: Casey Research knows a lot of serially successful individuals whom we honor in our NexTen as well as our Explorers’ League. We may not have all the answers in the resource market—but we’re always just one phone call away from someone who does. Whether investing takes too much time out of your busy day or it just flat out intimidates you—we are here to help. And right now the best compilation of our own, practical investment advice and the supreme knowledge of people like Dr. Lacy Hunt, James Rickards, and Don Coxe is available on CD and MP3. You can still pre-order the Summit Audio Collection for a $100 discount, but only until the CDs are produced and ready to ship… so I suggest you don’t wait. With a blue-ribbon faculty of 37 experts, including your team of Casey analysts dedicated to finding the “pulse” of the market, you can tilt the odds in your favor. So what do you say? Is it time to beat the House? Additional Links and Reads Born Libertarian: Doug Casey on Ron Paul and the Price of Freedom (The Gold Report) This is a fantastic interview between a Gold Report editor and Doug Casey about Ron Paul as well as libertarianism. An excellent read for anyone. US Builders Hoard Mineral Rights Under New Homes (Financial Post) The fracking boom and the American shale revolution have made millionaires out of plenty of homeowners in North Dakota. Homebuilders are beginning to secretly hold on to the mineral rights under new homes just in case the home is sitting on a pool of oil. Unethical? Perhaps, but definitely something to keep an eye on next time you’re buying a house. US to Overtake Russia as Top Oil Producer, Says IEA (Financial Post) Several subscribers requested the source of our claim that US is now producing more oil than Russia. The International Energy Agency (IEA) estimates that in 2014, the US will average a production rate of 11 million barrels per day compared to 10.9 million for Russia. Most of the growth has been due to new advances in hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling and has significantly changed energy politics around the world.