Korean Troubles and the Horrific Impact of War

The Economic Times

In an interview with ET Now, Jim Rogers, Chairman, Rogers Holding, talks about the correction in global markets besides giving his views on commodities and India. Excerpts:

Global markets are correcting and everyone is saying it is because of Korea. Would you endorse that thought?

First of all, global markets should be correcting about this time because they have been pretty strong recently and there is always some reason to correct. This time, it looks like it might be Korea. Whenever you have threat of war, usually everything goes down at first, then you have to figure out what to invest in after the initial collapse. In my view, the thing to invest in is commodities because if there is going to be war, it is always good for commodities and if there is no war, then commodities will rally like everything else.

So what did you make of today’s sell off and the news coming out of Korea? Do you think it was just a trigger point for people to unwind positions in the market and do you think stepping into December from a near term perspective, there would still be some selling pressure that will continue?

Yes, we have had very strong markets in the past 2 or 3 months in the West anyway and whenever you have strong markets, something always comes along to call for correction. There is always some surprise and again, I have no idea what is going on in Korea, but just that nothing else is the reason for the correction, it could have been rain in Spain that could have caused the correction and the markets always find a reason to correct after they have been strong for a while and this is certainly a good reason to correct. If suddenly World War III is about to breakout, a good reason for the market to correct. I do not expect World War III to breakout by the way.

Buy on rumours and sell on news and we have seen that happening once again. Immediately after the QE2, blueprint was out, commodity has corrected and dollar actually has reversed. Do you think this is a short term phenomenon? Everyone took Mr. Bernanke for granted that he will continue to print money, there was too much of forward buying which happened before the QE2 final announcement and now the excesses are getting flushed out?

Yes. No matter what happens, America is going to continue to print money. Unfortunately that is all America knows to do, it is not the right thing to do, it is not good for the world, but that is all America knows to do.

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Jim Rogers has taught finance at Columbia University’s business school and is a media commentator worldwide. He is the author of Adventure Capitalist, Investment Biker, Hot Commodities, A Gift to My Children, and A Bull in China. See his website.