Ep 111: Jim Rogers: Do What You Love
Today’s episode features a very exciting guest: Jim Rogers.
While the young ’uns may not be familiar with this name, Jim is a legend in the financial world. Not only was he the co-founder of Soros Fund Management (along with legendary investor George Soros), but he also created the Rogers International Commodities Index (RICI).
Jim first entered the financial world in the 1960s, when things were very, very different. In the episode, he shares with host Tim Bohen what he’s seen, his best trading tips, and what he thinks could be next for the market.
As Jim explains his start in the financial world, “I didn’t go to law school, I didn’t go to business school, I didn’t go to medical school … as soon as I could, I went to Wall Street.”
When Jim began his career, trading was very different from how it is today.
For example, to stay on top of company events that could affect stock prices, he traveled across the nation to check out companies. He was also on myriad mailing lists for different companies and subscribed to newspapers from five countries.
The actual process of trading was more arduous, too. At the time, literal pink sheets listed brokers and price details, and you’d have to call brokers or market makers to ask about prices and execute orders.
As for short-term traders? They lived and died by the ticker. Every five or six minutes they’d check out the ticker tape and execute short-term trades based on what it relayed. That was the historical equivalent of the current day trader.
A Meeting of the Minds
After working on Wall Street for a few years, Jim met George Soros.
Here’s a little history lesson, if you’re not in the know: Soros would go on to become “the man who broke the Bank of England” by short-selling billions of dollars of pounds sterling. That earned him a billion-dollar profit during the Black Wednesday crisis in the U.K. He’s an incredible investor.
When Jim met George, they hit it off, and the rest is history. Jim did the research, going around to companies of interest and checking them out, and George did the trading.
Their system was successful. Jim retired at 37 to take advantage of the freedom his investing had afforded him. He wanted to have more than one life — he wanted adventure.
Since then, he’s been involved in the financial world, but also takes plenty of time to pursue his dreams. He’s even gone around the world on a motorcycle!
Jim’s Thoughts on Everything
Jim weighs in with some thoughts about life, trading, finance, and how he sees the economy moving in the future.
Is day trading a valuable profession? Yes. According to Jim, “If you’re good at it, for goodness’ sake, do it!” But at the same time, he cautions against trying to force it. It’ll really only work if you have a genuine interest in what you’re doing.
Money is disappearing. Last week, Jim tried to buy some ice cream in China with actual cash but couldn’t because the vendor was completely phone-based.
Jim sees the writing on the wall: cash is no longer king. It’s all going to go virtual, but you’ll learn why he doesn’t necessarily think this means in cryptocurrency is the best investment.
Ag-tech is the future. Jim is bullish on agriculture. It’s been a disaster for the past several decades. Farming is an unforgiving profession, and few want to pursue it these days. The thing is, our farmers are getting older, and soon there won’t be any competition.
According to Jim’s forecast, if you can farm, you can have a rich future. Financial types have had their decades. It’s time for agriculture again.
Pursuing your passion. Jim finds it sad that many people aren’t in touch with what their passions are. And even if they’re aware, they’re scared to pursue their passion and really run with it. He and Tim discuss why being true to yourself is so important.
What Would a 20-Year-Old Jim Rogers Do Today?
In the episode, Jim shares what he’d do differently if he could go back in time. You may be surprised by his responses, which include learning Chinese and what he would’ve done differently in his career.
Curious About Something?
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I enjoyed the pod cast. My son is heading off to Denver for college.
I like how honest Jim Rogers is about what he is and isn’t good at and what he wanted from life and did it.
Most people are afraid of failure and won’t go outside their comfort zone even if it’s something they really want. They’ll regret it later “shoulda, woulda, coulda”. Some people are afraid of success, more will be expected of them. Some are afraid of both so they are catatonic.
He’s right about agriculture, there are fewer families staying in the business and on top of that they they are building houses on prime farmland. Where’s our food going to come from when it’s all gone?
There will be a shortage of A/C and heating repairman, along with mechanics, house cleaners, plumbers. Not everyone is college material. They don’t want to and they prefer to use their hands and head to do something that’s useful to a lot of people.