In recent weeks, the 69-year-old Rogers has said politics and the natural downside of the ‘business cycle’ will determine the timing of the next big drop in most financial assets.
“This is an election year in the United
States, as you well know, and there are something like 40 to 45 elections over the next 12 months, including France, U.S., Germany,” Rogers told Opalesque Radio. “So we have a lot of elections, a lot of politicians who want to be re-elected. So there’s going to be a lot of good news.
Rogers added, however, historical data show that the ebb and flow of business activity suggest to him that the rebound from the crushing lows of corporate profits, stock prices and GDP during the 2008-9 economic and financial collapse has run their course.
As negligible as the rebound of the economy has been, with GDP still not back to the peak of $13.1 trillion for 2008, the time has come for the next leg down, according to him.
“The overall situation is getting much worse because the debt is going through the roof for all of us,” he continued. “You should be worried about 2013, 2014, but overall, 2012 won’t look so bad.
“In America, we’ve had an economic slowdown, or recession, every 4 to 6 years since the beginning of the Republic. So you can do the addition, by 2013 or 2014 we’re going to have another . . . we’re overdue for another recession. And if it comes, the markets are anticipating that . . .”
Within the context of the so-called two-year ‘recovery’ that still has yielded less U.S. GDP for 2011 than was achieved for 2008, along with higher overall debt at the federal level, the downside to the U.S. dollar, and by implication a U.S. Treasuries sell off, could be severe, Rogers has said in previous interviews. He still holds to that thesis.
“There’s going to be more currency turmoil in the next year or two. . . as these imbalances are sorted out,” he concluded.
Though Rogers didn’t mention his short position of U.S. Treasuries during the Opalesque interview, he did announce earlier in the year that he has taken a short position on U.S. Treasuries debt, citing limitations to the upside in prices (lower rates) while the Fed maintains its dominate position as the ‘buyer of last resort’, and due to waning demand, to outright decreased holdings, from foreign buyers.
Echoing Rogers’ outlook of the U.S. Treasury market is Peter Schiff. In a telephone interview with financial publication Forbes, he said ultra-loose monetary policy at the Federal Reserve only serves to exacerbate the snap back to the imbalances Rogers spoken about in the Opalesque Radio interview.
“The more you delay it, the bigger it will be,” Schiff told Forbes, Tuesday, “so we need to raise interest rates during the recession to confront the inefficiencies.”
“We consume more than we produce and we borrow abroad, but we are never going to be able to pay them back,” Schiff continued, a conclusion that appears to have been drawn as well by the nations responsible for driving global growth for more than a decade, the BRICS.
Heads of state from the nations of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa signed an agreement in New Delhi, Thursday, making way for a credit facility as a means of extending credit between the five-nation block in their own currencies, thereby bypassing the U.S. dollar for international trade.
The fourth BRICS summit is the latest in a rapid trend by developing nations to disengage from the dollar/euro reserve currency protocol. In addition to the agreement, the five-nation block also called for reforms to the World Bank and International Monetary fund (IMF).
Since as early as 2000, Schiff has warned that the world’s producers of goods and raw materials will one day stop extending credit to the debtor nations as the debt levels become unserviceable. That means it’s inevitable that the U.S. dollar falls further and interest rates rise to reflect the added risk of holding U.S. Treasuries.
At that time, few in mainstream media (MSM) took Schiff seriously, while some scorned him, when he warned of a dollar collapse. But today, he has been partially vindicated. Gold has risen sharply against the two reserve currencies, the U.S. dollar and euros, since 2000.
However, contrary to what Schiff’s pundits now say, the worst has not passed; there’s much more currency debasing to come, including a U.S. Treasury market collapse.
“All of the people who were 100% wrong [back in ‘08] are saying that everything’s okay [now],” Schiff said. “I am telling them they didn’t solve the problem and are making it so much worse.”
According to Schiff, the U.S. Treasury market is set for a big fall in 2013, and he expects to be right once again.