Early FI – Twice Up the Mountain

by FI Fighter on January 13, 2018

in Financial Independence, Mining Stocks, Progress

As 2018 gets under way, I will admit to everyone that my focus has shifted slightly away from investing full-time, all the time 24/7. The truth of the matter is — There’s a lot more to life than just making $$$.

Granted, everyone knows the importance of striving for early FI, because in many regards, achieving such a tremendous dream/goal is indeed the path to unlocking “the better life” since at the end of the day, time is our most valuable (and precious) currency.

With that said, I’m currently vacationing out in Manila, and although I’m doing my best to keep tabs on the markets, I’m also making a conscious effort to get out there and explore… To me, this means: meeting new people, trying new foods, sightseeing new surroundings, etc.

Rush hour on the bus…

Cryptocurrency Meet Up Group (hosted by yours truly) at Forbes Town.

Wagyu Tapas.

Crispy pork.

Bicol Express (spicy).

Binagoongan (yeah, took me awhile to learn how to say that!).

“Dirty” ice cream…

Trike riding in Quezon City.

Chilling at a “Dog Cafe”… Play with dogs and drink coffee… Some would say, “the good life”.

These memories that I’m creating are all especially exciting because they are taking place in a country that I am totally unfamiliar with… I’m learning the ropes as I go…

The experiences are all priceless…

I feel alive…

So yeah, you get the idea…

Anyway, the life after you’ve reached early FI is one thing, but the path to getting there is a whole nother story, which has been (and always will be) the main focus on this blog.

Mining Stocks Journey (2015-Present Day)

Getting back to THE BIG PICTURE, I’d like to at this time discuss my thoughts on mining stocks and my general view on investments as a whole. It’s been no secret to anyone that since the summer of 2015, I’ve gone pretty much “full throttle” into the whacky world of mining stocks, or The Game of Rocks, as I like to refer it to…

To make a long story short, the reason I decided to “back up the truck” with conviction was because I saw tremendous deep value opportunity in beaten up miners that were setting record lows in terms of market valuations due to a busted commodities market. I saw where things stood (by looking at historical charts), and said, “Now is the time to be aggressively buying!

Fast forward to the here and now, and I’ve got to say that the progress that I’ve made in my own individual mining stocks portfolio has well exceeded my initial goals/targets when I jumped into the fray.

Quite honestly, I really had no idea what to expect going in…

There have been a ton of ups and down, but all in all, I like to focus on the portfolio as an aggregate, as opposed to fixating on individual success/failure stories…

You’ll always win some and lose some…

The hope is that your winners will amortize your losers and still produce a healthy rate of return,” as Rick Rule likes to say.

At the conclusion of 2017, this is where my mining stocks portfolio stood:

At year’s end, I shared the following image with donors/subscribers via the THANK YOU newsletter, which I publish from time-to-time to say “thank you” to all the long-time followers and supporters of this blog…

By the end of 2017, yup, I had eclipsed $1,000,000 in profits (mostly unrealized gains) via mining stocks…

As an Average Joe who has never known what he is doing, I gotta say seeing that type of figure was pretty surreal…

I guess if anything, I learned the importance of “staying the course” and sticking with an investment idea even when times got bad and your thesis was moving completely against you…

The Depths of Despair (January 19, 2016):

Depths of Despair 1_19_16

And here’s where things stand now… up an additional $100k since year’s end.

It’s been a tremendous start to the new year, I will straight up acknowledge…

Next Steps

Obviously, anytime your investment thesis is panning out, you’re going to feel good… It’s probably human nature even to consider “doubling down”, or getting even more crazy aggressive… I mean why not, right? It seems like you’ve got the wind to your back, clear skies, and everything is just gravy…

Well, that’s NOT how I approach investing (or life)…

Suffice to say, I just try and do my best to stay grounded, humble, and in touch with reality…

  • I’m not that good.
  • Past performance is not a useful indicator for future success.
  • A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.
  • I’m not that good.
  • Etc.

Sometimes, you just want to count your blessings and live to fight another day…

Of course, I can only speak for myself, but like I mentioned earlier, as it pertains to making gains, my biggest goals/dreams/ambitions/etc. for my mining stocks portfolio have already been eclipsed…

Regardless of where things go from here, even if we have so much further to run north still, I feel content and satisfied with the overall progress. Although it might seem anti-climatic, in a sense I feel like I’m ready to call it a day and do something else with my time (life)… For instance, I’m still searching for my life partner, but she keeps insisting on playing hide and seek, for whatever reason… Finding her, that’s a much more important goal/focus right now for me…

But I digresss…

Anyway, it’s times like these when I really have to stop and ask myself, “What’s the ultimate goal here?

With this blog, I’ve ALWAYS wanted to be the guy to tell it like it is… I wanted to document and time capsule my early FI progress… I strived to provide transparency because there’s way too many bullshit artists out there who are “all hat and no cattle”… Unscrupulous assholes who are out to rip you off to make a quick buck for themselves, pimping shit they don’t even believe in, trying to get you to bite (get duped)…

F that.

I never wanted any part of that deception… I can’t sleep at night fucking over good people who deserve so much better!

So, although my own investment ideas were never “sexy”, and many of my best performing picks were absolutely mundane and bland, well, sometimes it’s more about substance than flash… With investing/speculating, it’s very much a Game of Patience, which most people out there lack (myself included)…

But yeah, so up to now, I’ve documented my path to early FI and how I made $1 million first through real estate… and now mining stocks…

Everything looks so obvious with the benefit of hindsight, but for anyone who has been following along this blog for any length of time, you should be able to recall some of the: thoughts, ideas, opinions, mindset, etc. that you had and were experiencing along the ways of my journey…

You got to see up close and personal all my: successes, fuck ups, under the radar picks, contrarian ideas, rolling with the herd FOMO chasing (that led to disaster), etc..

I really hope a lot of the past posts were useful/beneficial… I mean, even for myself, one day I will need to go over them to try and learn, grow, and improve moving forward…


In short, most of what I achieved in mining stocks was the benefit of:

Buying low and selling high.

Net Worth -> Your Dreams

It’s 2018 now.

2015/early 2016 are long gone… with much of the low hanging fruit in the mining sector…

Granted, there will ALWAYS be another train arriving at the station, but long-term, everyone knows that mining stocks are “ticking time bombs”, or “buy and hold rentals”, and they aren’t well suited for the long haul…

Since I’ve made my gains, I think understandably so, my focus has to shift to wealth preservation mode much more so than trying to find the next major hyper-alpha-insane gains generation leads.

Sure, I really believe in cryptocurrencies as being a wonderful platform to try and help investors/speculators extract some potent alpha juice (with minimal capital), but I by no means have to take on extraordinary risks at this stage of the game… Yes, I will partake in ICOs and things of that nature, but it will be with “play money”…

Further, although I have no crystal ball, if I had to venture a guess, I still think we are very much in the early stages of the next commodities bull cycle (especially for gold and silver)…

With that said, beginning this year, I will start to trim back on my own mining stocks portfolio holdings… No, I have no idea what a better investment would be at this time, but you all know long-term I prefer Class A real estate

Will I buy something in Manila?

I have been attending a lot of open house showings…

New construction, unit view. Near Uptown Mall. Wonderful location.

Who knows?

What I do know is that 12 million pesos can get me a 2/2 condo in Bonifacio Global City (BGC)… which is prime Class A location for owning property in Manila.

So, ~$240,000 for my “dream home” in a most fabulous location…

Remember, I’m all about Class A… I’ve been burned by Class C and I never want to deal with that mess ever again…

On the path to early FI, I’ve learned to not care one iota for “cash flow”… As I’ve been saying since 2015, Net Worth can be converted to Cash Flow

With the gains that I’ve made in mining stocks, I can purchase quite a number of Class A condos in Manila… for “cash flow”.


Or shitty AT&T stock for that “juicy” 5% dividend yield trap… now that I am twice post-FI and have made my big gains (no, I’m not actually going to do that, but just pointing out that I could if I coveted cash flow above all else, which I don’t)…


Or I can even pay off all my loans and be 100% debt free (no, I won’t seriously consider doing this either since I look at my 30 year fixed-rate loans as a blessing… but it’s nice to know that I could own all my properties free and clear, no question!)…


But don’t forget…


People were telling me I was insane and batshit crazy in 2015 for doing what I was doing… and they probably are still thinking the same thing today…


Early FI is NOT a popularity contest… Today, everybody out there is obsessed with buying dividend growth stocks and real estate DIRECTLY, but c’mon, think outside the box if you want to make outsized returns… If the masses are there, the low hanging fruit has been picked and is long gone, for awhile now… Sure, in 2012/2013 it was a great idea to buy dividend stocks and Class A real estate DIRECTLY, but today?

No way!

I am adamant in my belief that if you want to get to early FI, make your MASSIVE GAINS where other people aren’t looking, and then redeploy the proceeds into the assets (i.e. Class A real estate) that you ultimately covet the most…


You get what you want most by NOT focusing on what you want most… if that makes sense!


No doubt, I am not married to any of these “trading vehicles”, like mining stocks… I do not swear allegiance to them at all, and have no problems cashing out when I’m in good profits…


As it pertains to getting to early FI, I believe even more vehemently now than ever before that you reach the mountain top by chasing after the “best of the best” Tier 1/Class A assets at attractive prices; be an agnostic investor and look for opportunities across all asset classes!

Fuck the aforementioned mediocre cash flow investments (e.g. turnkey properties, bloated large cap no growth stocks like AT&T, etc.)! That will NOT help you get to early FI at a young age!


My Bay Area rentals are my golden hens, and my Class C turkeys (turnkey rentals) are all dogshit that I regret buying every single day…


Again, I don’t care for being popular… or politically correct, for that matter…


This is my own truth based off of my own real-life experiences…


I’ve climbed up the early FI mountain twice now.


The bigger picture for me at this time is to help others achieve the same beautiful dream. This is the next focus here on this blog. I’ve rambled on and on about myself for long enough now… Right?


But please, please, please, please don’t make the same silly (ridiculously stupid) investing mistakes that I made!!!


For my own personal journey, I was more than willing to share my progress along the way to early FI on two separate occasions, so at this time, I hope you will understand my desire to fly under the radar as I look to quietly exit stage left. The hard work has already been done, now it’s the fun (and easier) part of the process…


Mining stocks were very kind to me.


And now I can easily afford to buy the home of my dreams (all cash) INDIRECTLY (paid for fully via mining stocks gains), If I choose to do so. Again, this was all made possible by me NOT focusing on what I deep down coveted the most…


Ultimately, in the end, we do what we do because it’s all about:


Life experiences and maximizing our time on this earth…


That’s what it’s always been about.


That’s what it’s always going to be about.


Fight On!

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Income SurferNo Gravatar January 13, 2018 at 4:47 am

Couldn’t agree more Jay. What good is money if you are miserable or don’t have time to enjoy it. Have fun and safe travels. Catch up with you when you’re back on this side of the Pacific.


2 TJNo Gravatar January 13, 2018 at 6:02 am

Very impressive, Jay. Incredible returns. I got into mining stocks because of you (and the new US government – I was looking for a way to invest in gold) a little over a year ago, and while I haven’t done nearly as well as you, I have done significantly better than I did before in “other” stocks. So thank you for that. Enjoy your travels!


3 BoiNo Gravatar January 13, 2018 at 6:50 am

Hi Jay,

only because of you I was researching clean energy stocks last year.
I invested only a small sum in 10 stocks and I absolutely made it with Katanga Mining. YOu did not even mention them but my own due dilligence led me to this story. Im up over a 10 bagger now and my other miners are at least 2-3x.

Ofc its not that big of a deal because I didnt invest too much, but its only the beginning, and I used some profits to fuel the next story (crypto, turnarounds etc.)

Keep on grinding!


4 D BradleyNo Gravatar January 13, 2018 at 11:19 am

Great stuff, Jay. Even the 100k pop this month alone is proof of the concept.

Making the bigger risk/reward plays is harder to stomach for me with a wife and kids to support. I have some cash in mining funds that’s done well, but this year I’d like to let loose a little bit and speed up the FI process 🙂


5 SFtraderNo Gravatar January 13, 2018 at 3:27 pm


I recently heard this quote from Mark Yusko… “Concentration makes you rich, diversification keeps you rich.”

Great job in mining sector sir! Well done.



6 FI FighterNo Gravatar January 13, 2018 at 9:45 pm


That is a brilliant quote, full of wisdom!



7 ExcelsiorNo Gravatar January 13, 2018 at 4:45 pm

Jayfire – This was a great piece amigo and very inspiring for all of us still working towards Financial Independence. It has been a true honor reading your updates along the way and mentally traveling with you on the FI journey in the mining stocks. You’ve always been transparent, realistic, and called things like you saw them, and came out on top. Kudos to you sir and enjoy the fruits of your hard work exploring the world and meeting new people. Ever Upward!


8 NickNo Gravatar January 13, 2018 at 7:57 pm

I’ve read a lot of blogs on personal finance and investing but yours in my favourite. You’ve provided tremendous value to me and I’m sure others in many ways. You been extremely successful at investing and I love how humble you have remained. You seem to spot to macro events with ease and have translated those into finance gains. I find most people get caught up in the noise and miss the signal, myself included. Good luck on your search for a life partner, certainly a different ball game than investing! I have thoroughly gained from you have shared here and wish you best going forward. Maybe we’ll get to read about some of it here :0)


9 HRNo Gravatar January 13, 2018 at 11:17 pm

You’ve done great in mining! I’m still chasing after FI.

Read up on this, you might have life changing results. Practice and you won’t need to play hide and seek.

And no, Im not advertising anything, nor spamming your comments section. Just opening you up to “investing” in yourself.

In terms of investing in miners, thanks for sharing all of your knowledge, ideas, and philosophy.


10 FI FighterNo Gravatar January 14, 2018 at 12:17 am


Thanks for sharing the link. You’re right, as it pertains to my own personal life, I need a makeover and a lot of improvement…

JBY has been a recipe for failure (disaster) in my own experience so far in dating, so I’m very cognizant of that and the need to better myself.

There is more to life than just investing, and I’m starting to divert my time/efforts towards those areas.



11 FI FighterNo Gravatar January 14, 2018 at 12:14 am

Thanks everyone, I have a meet up to attend to but your kind words and support really made my day today!

I am very thankful to have such a wonderful readership base. 🙂

All the best!


12 joeNo Gravatar January 16, 2018 at 12:17 pm

$1mm in gains = pretty badass!


13 ReepekgNo Gravatar March 26, 2018 at 2:12 pm

A huge congratulations on your mining thesis. What is really impressive, and I don’t think got mentioned, is that I bought GDX back in the beginning around when you did and I’m “only” up 21.6%.

Goes to show your extra research and effort did end up in the bottom line.


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