Mumbai: The European Union is making a mistake by printing more euros, American investor and financial commentator Jim Rogers, who was also a co-founder of Quantum Fund along with George Soros, said in an interview. Rogers said economic uncertainty is pushing gold prices higher, but he would rather put money in agricultural commodities. Edited excerpts:
Do you think the European Central Bank and the European Union has bought some temporary peace, at least in Europe?
They have held out for a few successes in the European bond market, but in the end it’s going to be bad for Europe because now everybody knows that Europe doesn’t care about the currency, they are willing to print money and they are willing to let people spend as much money as they want. This is not good for Europe; it’s not good for the euro and the world. I think this is a terrible mistake.
Raising concern: Jim Rogers, American investor and financial commentator.
What about China? Do you see Chinese demand cooling off in 2010 or perhaps in 2011?
The Chinese government is doing its best to cool things off. So I expect it to be successful. They have raised reserve requirements three times and interest rates, making it difficult to speculate in real estate. I am quite sure that China will slow down from this year, as the government is trying, and in my view, they are doing the right thing.
Will you still continue to hold the euro over a long period of time?
I am worried. I was very surprised that they did what they did because it seems to me that the Germans and everybody else have now given up on the euro. It seems they wanted the euro to go down and many manufacturers in Europe wanted the euro to decline. So I am not sure what I am going to do. I am thinking about it.
What will this do to commodity prices in 2010?
Gold is making all-time high right now because many people are worried about the inflationary aspect.
What is your view on a commodity like sugar? We have seen sugar prices falling around 50% from their recent highs. Would you invest in sugar?
I am not buying it. My lawyer won’t let me buy individual commodities any more. So I invest through the Rogers index when I invest in commodities. I much rather own agriculture than just about anything these days because agriculture prices are so unbelievably depressed on a historical basis.
What about dollar? What would be your view there?
I own US dollars probably because so many people don’t know what to do and they are rushing into the US dollar as a refuge. I cannot believe that people think that the US dollar is a safe haven because it’s a terribly flawed currency, but so many people would short the dollar and negative on the dollar last year.
I am still long on the dollar. I am not selling my US dollars. What is going on in Europe makes people even more frightened about the euro. The dollar so far has been good thing for me this year.