Jim Rogers: Bernanke Only ‘Understands Printing Money’

Friday, 08 Feb 2013 11:54 AM

By Glenn J. Kalinoski

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The printing of “unlimited” money by central banks in the United States and Japan is “insane” and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke “doesn’t know anything about what’s going on in the world,” according to star investor Jim Rogers, chairman of Rogers Holdings.

“It’s outrageous what they’re doing,” Rogers told CNBC.

“The Federal Reserve is printing money as fast as they can, and the Bank of Japan said ‘we're going to print unlimited money.’ You know what the Federal Reserve said? ‘We'll match you and we'll print money, too,’” he said.

Editor's Note: Economist Unapologetically Calls Out Bernanke, Obama for Mishandling Economy. See What They Did

“This is insane!”

Regarding Bernanke, Rogers noted he doesn’t know much. “He doesn’t understand economics, he doesn’t understand finance, he doesn’t understand currencies. All he understands is printing money.”

In fact, he added, “Read his studies of the depression. No mention of debt, no mention of foreign trade, no mention of currencies. He doesn’t know anything about what’s going on in the world. He just understands printing money.”

Wall Street Journal editors are not impressed with the Fed’s recent decision to maintain its massive easing program.

The Fed is buying $85 billion of Treasurys and mortgage-backed securities a month and plans to keep short-term interest rates near zero until unemployment drops to 6.5 percent.

“The Fed has led a parade of easing around the world, as other central bankers follow to prevent their currencies from rising too much,” according to a Journal editorial. “Yet the economic paradox of our time is slow growth and lousy job creation despite these monetary exertions.”

The U.S. economy contracted 0.1 percent in the fourth quarter, and the consensus is that growth will total about 2 percent in 2013.

“This continues to be the 2 percent recovery, the slowest in the modern era,” the editorial states.

It cites Stanford University economist John Taylor, who wrote in the paper that current Fed policy “creates incentives for otherwise risk-averse investors to take on questionable investments as they search for higher yields.”

Rogers singled out Russian markets for praise after being bearish on them for 46 years.

“Russia is terribly depressed,” he said. “Nobody likes Russia. I’m buying the bonds, the currency and stocks. I first went there in 1966. I’ve changed my mind and, yes, I think I’m not giving my money to (Russian President Vladimir) Putin. I hope. That’s how you make money. You find something that everybody hates. When it’s changing … that’s how you make money.”

He noted that he is also shorting U.S. Treasurys. “I'm actually making money at the moment. … Maybe it's the end of the 32-year bull market. If it is, I'm making a lot of money in bonds. Stocks may go up, too, but I don't see how this [the recent stock rally] can last.”

Editor's Note: Economist Unapologetically Calls Out Bernanke, Obama for Mishandling Economy. See What They Did

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