By Dominique de Kevelioc de Bailleul
In his most serious demeanor of recent memory, Jim Rogers of Roger Holdings said the U.S. economy is in for a very rough sledding akin to other major crises since the beginning of the republic. In fact, the 69-year-old veteran of the commodities markets said even he is “worried.”
When asked by Newsmax’s Kathleen Walter about the state of the U.S. economy, Rogers said he’s not particularly concerned about 2012; it’s an election year, after all. But after the election, in 2013 and 2014, “it’s coming again” —that slowdown expected by many analysts to lead to a sovereign debt crisis in the U.S., much like what has afflicted Greece.
“. . . this year is going to look good and feel good, because Mr. Obama is going to give out a lot of good information,” Rogers said. “It may be manipulated information, but he’s going to put out a lot of good information. He’s going to spend a lot of money; he’s going to print a lot of money to get us through the election.”
But post-election, conditions will change, the data will change, and the financial turmoil that the markets have already enduring will accelerate appreciably, according to Rogers.
“Be very worried about 2013 and be very worried about 2014, because that’s when the next slowdown comes,” Rogers stated. “In 2002 we had a recession and in 2008, it was worse because the debt was so much higher.”
He added, “The next time is going to be even worse because the debt is so staggeringly high now. So if you are not worried about 2013, please — get worried.”
“Staggeringly high” U.S. sovereign debt, to which Rogers alluded, is projected by most economists to top $16 trillion for fiscal 2012, and the rate of deterioration has soared dramatically since the global financial crisis began in 2008. The U.S. budget deficit for fiscal 2012 is expected to reach $1.6 trillion, or more, up drastically from $438 billion at the end of fiscal year 2008, and up 10-fold, or $162 billion, from 2007.
Rogers’ dire warning comes off the heals of Marc Faber’s May 25th comments, of which, he said the probability of a U.S. downturn next year is “100 percent.”
Because both men have earned reputations for candid and measured language regarding forecasts, investors have weighted their assessments of the future for the economy and investments quite heavily.
During the U.S. collapse, stocks will drop and currency markets will be in turmoil, according to Rogers. However, like a tsunami, the tide back into the U.S. dollar could be strong during the worst of the collapse, as it had been during the kickoff to the crisis with the fall of Lehman Brothers (from USDX 72 to 88), but the epicenter of a global currency crisis will come back to the shores of the U.S.
That’s the time when interest rates on U.S. sovereign debt could skyrocket, leading to a flight of the U.S. dollar and financial Armageddon predicted by some notable and respected analysts and economists.
Taking into account that 61 percent of global central bank reserves are held in U.S. dollars (28 percent held in euros), the extent of the damage to living standards in the U.S. and across the globe could be dramatic and sudden, according to Euro Pacific Capital CEO Peter Schiff and ShadowStats economist John Williams.
Greece’s less-than-two-percent weighting of the eurozone is equivalent to the weighting of the impact of America’s state of Maryland upon the U.S. dollar, so the fallout of a Greenback in free-fall, globally, has no precedent, no yardstick and no shape, giving rise to the notion that the purpose of FEMA facilities built throughout the U.S. during the past decade has been the result of preparations for a Greek-like moment of global financial history, with riotous crowds and mayhem on American soil 100 times more problematic than that of Greece’s.
“It’s just going to be turmoil. Everybody’s going to be worried, including me,” Rogers said.