As the first decade of the new millennium rapidly comes to a close, today’s chart takes a look back at the decade that was. Today’s chart begins shortly after the stock market as well as the nation was partying like it’s 1999 (i.e. dot-com boom). The proverbial punch bowl was taken away early in 2000 and the Nasdaq suffered its 2 1/2 year dot-com bust. The market eventually bottomed and began a five-year rally thanks in part some infamous financial innovations (i.e. Ninja loans — No Income, No Job, and no Assets). Then as it became apparent that those financial innovations weren’t quite as innovative as first hoped, the system went into near meltdown. Over the past nine months, the Nasdaq has been rallying (albeit at a pace that is slowing over time) and is currently testing resistance. All in all, a tough decade.
Sign up for FREE ChartoftheDay HERE or at http://www.chartoftheday.com/
Rogers Turns On A Dime
Or more accurately, on the dollar. Guess what he thinks of sterling!
Yes, Jim Rogers has been doing the interview rounds again, having extended interviews with Bloomberg and CNBC in particular, and he’s as outspoken and entertaining as ever.
And what has surprised many is the fact that he’s expecting a short-term surge in the dollar. His thinking is contrarian: He’s seeing everyone taking a shot at the dollar and deciding it must be time to buy. “Everybody’s short the dollar right now.” Claiming, as always, to be the world’s worst trader, he has been accumulating dollars recently.
But don’t for a moment think he’s gone soft on the issues facing the US. He sees the rally lasting for three to 12 months, but long term he still regards the dollar as doomed. He is particularly scathing of at Treasury Secretary, Tim Geithner, and his attempts to solve a debt- and consumption-fueled problem with more debt and more consumption.
In classic Rogers style he says “that’s like saying to Tiger Woods ‘you get another girlfriend and you’ll solve your problems’, or ‘five more girlfriends and you’ll solve your problems'”!
Sterling under pressure
But before you start feeling too comfortable, Rogers is extremely bearish about sterling. The former business partner of George Soros (who famously speculated against sterling during the 1992 crisis), says that for the first time in over thirty years he doesn’t have any sterling investments.
“The UK is not going to keep its AAA rating — I don’t know why it has one still … The Prime Minister there has been ruining things. It grieves me to see what’s happening in the UK.”
He expects 2010 to be a year of currency crises, and puts Britain in the same league as Argentina and Ukraine as regards countries that will suffer.
Gold, which many consider a currency more than a commodity, may also see a correction, but only short term. At some stage over the next decade he expects to see it hit $2,000 per ounce. He owns gold, but if it gets to $2,000 already in 2010 he’d be a seller; if it drops below $1,000, he says, “I hope that I’m smart enough to buy more”.
Having said that, he prefers silver, which is 70% off its all-time high, and also palladium. The commodity guru would not be surprised to see some short-term correction in the oil price, but maintains his long-term bullish position on commodities in general.
He is particularly keen on agricultural commodities at the moment, and says “inventories of food are the lowest they’ve been in decades”.
The next bubble?
Despite some gloomy predictions, Rogers has no short positions at present, and that’s extremely unusual for him. The next bubble he expects to see is in long-term US government bonds, and he expects to be taking a short position on those. “Would you lend money to the US government for thirty years at 4% or 5%, and in US dollars?”
While he always issues health warnings with his predictions, Rogers is always worth listening to.