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Wall Street legend and bestselling author Jim Rogers offers investing insights and economic, political, and social analysis, drawing on lessons and observations from his lifetime in the markets.  Jim Rogers, whose entertaining accounts of his travels around the world -- studying the markets from Russia to Singapore from the ground up-- has enthralled readers, investors and Wall Street legend and bestselling author Jim Rogers offers investing insights and economic, political, and social analysis, drawing on lessons and observations from his lifetime in the markets.  Jim Rogers, whose entertaining accounts of his travels around the world -- studying the markets from Russia to Singapore from the ground up-- has enthralled readers, investors and Wall Street aficionados for two decades in such books as Investment Biker, Adventure Capitalist, Hot Commodities and A Bull In China .  In his engaging memoir Street Smarts, Rogers offers pithy commentary from a lifetime of adventure, from his early years growing up a naïve kid in Demopolis, Alabama, to his fledgling career on Wall Street, to his cofounding the wildly successful  Quantum Fund. Rogers always had a restless curiosity to experience and understand the world around him.  In Street Smarts, he takes us through the highlights of his life in the financial markets, from his school days at Yale and Oxford --  where despite the fact that he didn’t have enough money to afford the appropriate pair of shoes, he coxed the crew and helped to win the Oxford-Cambridge Boat Race as well as the Thames Cup, the first of his three Guiness World Records -- to his first heady taste of Wall Street in the mid - 1960s, and his years helping to run the most successful hedge fund on Wall Street.  As a result of his extraordinary success with the Quantum Fund, Rogers was able to retire at the age of thirty-seven.  Since then he has taught classes in finance at Columbia University, hosted television programs, and traveled the world seeing firsthand how revolutions in Chile affect coffee prices in Seattle, and how shortages of  copper in Africa affect electricity brownouts in Ohio.   In the course of his new book, Rogers offers often surprising observations on how the  world works – and what trends he sees in the future.  He explains why Asia will be the dominant economic force in the twenty-first century – and how he and his wife and two daughters moved to Singapore to prepare his family for the coming changes..  He discusses why America and the European Union are in decline, and what we need to do to right our economy and society.  The age of Wall Street, Rogers claims, when the finance industry drove 25% of America’s growth, is over.  Tomorrow’s economy will be driven by those who make things – food, energy, goods and consumables.  Regarded as one of the most astute investors Wall Street has ever known, Jim Rogers once again is at his acerbic and storytelling best.


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Wall Street legend and bestselling author Jim Rogers offers investing insights and economic, political, and social analysis, drawing on lessons and observations from his lifetime in the markets.  Jim Rogers, whose entertaining accounts of his travels around the world -- studying the markets from Russia to Singapore from the ground up-- has enthralled readers, investors and Wall Street legend and bestselling author Jim Rogers offers investing insights and economic, political, and social analysis, drawing on lessons and observations from his lifetime in the markets.  Jim Rogers, whose entertaining accounts of his travels around the world -- studying the markets from Russia to Singapore from the ground up-- has enthralled readers, investors and Wall Street aficionados for two decades in such books as Investment Biker, Adventure Capitalist, Hot Commodities and A Bull In China .  In his engaging memoir Street Smarts, Rogers offers pithy commentary from a lifetime of adventure, from his early years growing up a naïve kid in Demopolis, Alabama, to his fledgling career on Wall Street, to his cofounding the wildly successful  Quantum Fund. Rogers always had a restless curiosity to experience and understand the world around him.  In Street Smarts, he takes us through the highlights of his life in the financial markets, from his school days at Yale and Oxford --  where despite the fact that he didn’t have enough money to afford the appropriate pair of shoes, he coxed the crew and helped to win the Oxford-Cambridge Boat Race as well as the Thames Cup, the first of his three Guiness World Records -- to his first heady taste of Wall Street in the mid - 1960s, and his years helping to run the most successful hedge fund on Wall Street.  As a result of his extraordinary success with the Quantum Fund, Rogers was able to retire at the age of thirty-seven.  Since then he has taught classes in finance at Columbia University, hosted television programs, and traveled the world seeing firsthand how revolutions in Chile affect coffee prices in Seattle, and how shortages of  copper in Africa affect electricity brownouts in Ohio.   In the course of his new book, Rogers offers often surprising observations on how the  world works – and what trends he sees in the future.  He explains why Asia will be the dominant economic force in the twenty-first century – and how he and his wife and two daughters moved to Singapore to prepare his family for the coming changes..  He discusses why America and the European Union are in decline, and what we need to do to right our economy and society.  The age of Wall Street, Rogers claims, when the finance industry drove 25% of America’s growth, is over.  Tomorrow’s economy will be driven by those who make things – food, energy, goods and consumables.  Regarded as one of the most astute investors Wall Street has ever known, Jim Rogers once again is at his acerbic and storytelling best.

30 review for Street Smarts: Adventures on the Road and in the Markets

  1. 4 out of 5

    Erwin

    Excellent. Couldn't put it down. Jim Rogers best thinking distilled. I've been a fan of Rogers since stumbling onto Adventure Capitalist back in 2003, and was fortunate enough to have one-one-one lunch with Rogers in 2005. Investment Biker and A Gift to My Children are also very much worth reading. I think you can skip A Bull in China and Hot Commodities. Many reviewers think Rogers comes off as arrogant and disrespectful. People said the same thing about Steve Jobs. The problem is the disconnect Excellent. Couldn't put it down. Jim Rogers best thinking distilled. I've been a fan of Rogers since stumbling onto Adventure Capitalist back in 2003, and was fortunate enough to have one-one-one lunch with Rogers in 2005. Investment Biker and A Gift to My Children are also very much worth reading. I think you can skip A Bull in China and Hot Commodities. Many reviewers think Rogers comes off as arrogant and disrespectful. People said the same thing about Steve Jobs. The problem is the disconnect between the old paradigm that may still be prevent, and the new paradigm that visionary has already accepted. The contradictions are interpreted as disrespect. Bottom like, Rogers correctly called the 2007/08 housing collapse back in 2003. He called Fanny Mae and Freddie Mac scams back in 2003. He's been pointing out the dangers of the US financial system since 1994. What were the so called "experts" right about? Jim Rogers suggests that if we're going to fix the USA, we would need to: * change the tax system * change the education system * health care and litigation reform * bring the troops home Of course that's not going to happen, so you should plan accordingly! Rogers also brings up the interesting Gov at Home movement that believes corruption could be reduced by having elected representatives telecommute from offices in their home districts. The citizens they represent can easily access them, while lobbyists would have to travel all over the state or nation to push their narrow interest. Rogers even suggests that a "military draft" or "jourer selection" mechanism would produce better elected representation than our current system. Personally, I'm even more interested in possibilities of Liquid Feedback as used by the German Pirate Party. Rogers talk about: * Growing up in Alabama, school at Yale and Oxford and Rowing * Life on Wall Street, path to Soros and Quantum Fund ** Commodities vs other Asset types ** How supply/demand actually works - high prices create supply ** Short Selling good for the market, but vilified ** How to invest --- do not diversify * Teaching at Columbia. * Tenure, Bad Debt, and Bubble of US Higher Ed * Recent lawsuit over the RICI (Rogers Int'l Commodity Index) * Need for US legal system reform * Opportunity in North Korea and Myanmar * Irreversible global money and power shifting to Asia * Problems with the US and how they should [but won't] be fixed

  2. 5 out of 5

    Toe

    When a guy accumulates hundreds of millions of dollars, I’ll listen to him. Jim Rogers is one such guy. He does not reveal his net worth in this book. But the internet estimates it at around $300 million. He uses some of that money to amass an impressive bowtie collection that he peacocks on various business television shows. Describing a charmed life can sound like bragging. Here, Rogers recites his impressive experiences. More interesting to me, however, is the peak into his thought process and When a guy accumulates hundreds of millions of dollars, I’ll listen to him. Jim Rogers is one such guy. He does not reveal his net worth in this book. But the internet estimates it at around $300 million. He uses some of that money to amass an impressive bowtie collection that he peacocks on various business television shows. Describing a charmed life can sound like bragging. Here, Rogers recites his impressive experiences. More interesting to me, however, is the peak into his thought process and approach to life that this book supplies. He made his money by investing it. His secret lies in a desire to learn combined with confidence in his own beliefs. Jim Rogers was born in 1942 and raised in a small town in Alabama. The eldest of five boys, he has a natural curiosity for the workings of the world. He joined the Key Club in high school, which helped land him a scholarship to Yale. He studied history at Yale; earned a Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE) degree from Oxford as a member of Balliol College; and worked on Wall Street over the summers at a firm called Dominick & Dominick. While at Oxford, he was the coxswain (the steersman at the front who directs the rowers) for The Boat Race (an annual crew race between Oxford and Cambridge held on the River Thames in London). Fear and curiosity propelled him to succeed. He spent long hours learning in school and on Wall Street. He had no interest in business school, believing it to be a waste of time. He learned more on a trading desk in one summer than he would have learned in two years at business school. After graduating Oxford, he continued to work on Wall Street, returning to Dominick & Dominick. He was drafted into the army from 1966 to 1968. He marched on the Pentagon in 1967 to protest the war. He and George Soros worked at the investment bank Arnhold and S. Bleichroder before together founding Quantum Fund, a hedge fund. He attended Woodstock in 1969 by driving his motorcycle up from NYC; he stole a security guard’s jacket, donned it, and watched from the stage for most of Saturday and Sunday (missing Jimi Hendrix, who performed on Monday). During the 1970’s, Quantum Fund had returns of 4,200%. He loved his work. Rogers does not provide many specifics about his investments. He says that Wall Street will pay you to explore and know the world because everything is connected. An uprising in Chile, for example, will impact the world prices of whatever commodities Chile exports. He used his knowledge of history, politics, and economics to invest. He focused on commodities (later, in the 1990s, he started a commodities index) and short selling. He frequently took contrary positions to the rest of the market. After going broke early in his career on short positions, a decade of successful investing followed. Rogers had enough money to retire forever at the age of 37. He used his retirement to teach some business classes at Colombia for fun. The school compensated him with a lifetime membership to its gym. It later offered him a full professorship, but he turned it down. He doesn't think highly of tenure or American higher education as an investment. He believes one can obtain education more efficiently and cheaply elsewhere. His education continued during retirement in the form of travel. He traveled the world on two different occasions: once by motorcycle (around 1990 for two years) and once by car (around 2000 for three years). He visited approximately 150 countries on each trip. The trips provided opportunities for both business and pleasure. Visiting countries, meeting the people, and examining their markets (and, in particular, their black markets) is partly how he developed investment strategies. It is from these travels that he rejects the efficacy of lumping Brazil, Russia, India, and China together for investment analysis. They have different resources, people, culture, economies, and red tape. Rogers is long only on China and Chinese tourism out of the BRICs. He is also long Myanmar. In fact, he thinks Myanmar is the best investment opportunity he knows of right now. It has 60 million people, many natural resources, a highly educated and dedicated workforce, and it is nestled between India and China. The only reason he hasn’t invested there is because the US government won’t let him or any other Americans do so. While wealthy, Rogers had two divorces that go largely undiscussed. He was evidently too young and too committed to his work for his first two marriages to succeed. He remarried a third time, and is still married today. He and his third wife have two daughters. They moved to Singapore because Rogers believes Asia is the economic powerhouse of the future while the US will stagnate and decline. Rogers does not speak any languages other than English, and he wanted his young daughters to learn Mandarin. Increasing his fortune is not a priority; it could actually make life harder for his daughters if they became complacent because of it. He wants his daughters to reach their full potential. He believes they can do that in Singapore. Based on our respective net worths, Rogers knows much more about the world than I do. And I agree with nearly everything he writes in this book. Accordingly, I should probably move to Singapore or China and ride the shifting tides. But inertia is hard to overcome. Inertia is so hard to overcome that Rogers believes the changes needed to halt America’s decline will never come. These changes are: 1. Bring all US troops home from overseas. Stop policing the world. 2. Litigation reform such as a loser pays system. 3. Education reform – no policy recommendations given. 4. Replace income and savings tax with a consumption tax. 5. Require federal legislators to govern from home rather than Washington DC. Voting for bills would be done online from stadiums or arenas while constituents watched. 6. Perhaps select citizens in a controlled, random manner and draft them for limited terms to serve in Congress. It would be like jury duty but for legislatures. Rogers is right. America should make these changes. It won't. Rogers has taken steps to protect himself and his family from America's sclerosis. I have not. Decisions like these are why Rogers has $300 million and I do not. Memorable Quotes: “Success in life is measured by the ability to anticipate change, and I came to Singapore in response to the realization that the world is in the midst of a historic shift, a dramatic reshaping of the terrain, a decline of US leadership in the world and a commensurate rise in Asia.” “Meeting [a senior partner at Dominick & Dominick], I took the opportunity to ask his advice about going to business school. He said, ‘They will teach you nothing useful there. Come down here and sell soybeans short, once, and you will learn more about markets than you will wasting two years with them.’” “The United Kingdom in 1918 was the richest, most powerful country in the world. . . . But empires always overreach. They always overspend. And in 1918, the British Empire was already corroding from within.” “Short selling is in fact indispensable to the market. It adds liquidity as well as stability. The market needs both buyers and sellers. Without sellers, prices can skyrocket; without buyers, prices collapse. Suppose everybody, caught up in the dot-com mania, wants to buy a stock like Cisco. The stock goes from 20 to 80. The short sellers start coming in. The stock might then go 90. Without short sellers, it would go to 110. Without short sellers, there would be no sellers at all—there would be no liquidity, things would go nuts. Short sellers temper the mania. Let us say the short sellers are wrong. They have to cover their shorts, and they are summarily forced out of the market. And the stock goes to where it would have gone anyway. But suppose the short sellers are right—and, by the way, short sellers have a better record than most on Wall Street—and the stock starts heading toward a collapse. Everyone is in a panic, begging to get out. Everyone is screaming to sell. But with the stock crashing, there are no buyers. Well there is one group of buyers, actually: the short sellers. They have to buy back the stock. They have to replace the stock they borrowed. They have to cover their shorts. So in the collapse, the stock does not drop as much as it might have. A stock that might have gone down to 3 goes down only to, say, 8. So short sellers are good for the market. They have saved you from buying the failed stock at 110—if you bought at the top, you bought at 90, instead—and when you dump, thanks to the short seller, you will be able to get out at 8 rather than 3. Short selling has prevailed for some four hundred years because, after being tested repeatedly in the marketplace, it has shown itself to be valuable.” “Do not worry about failure . . . Do not worry about making mistakes in life. It is good to lose money, to go broke at least once, and preferably twice. But if you are going to do it, do it early in your career. It is better to go bust when you are talking about $20,000 than when you are talking about $20 million. Do it early, and it is not the end of the world. Losing everything can be a beneficial experience, because it teaches you how much you do not know. And if you can come back from a failure or two, chances are you are going to be more successful in the long run. There are countless stories of very successful people who failed once, twice, three times, and then came back. Mike Bloomberg got fired from Salomon Brothers, and it was the best thing that ever happened to him. He started his own company, delivering business information, and now he is one of the richest guys in the world. There is nothing wrong with failing if you learn from your mistakes.” “I am an investor, not a trader. I look to buy a stock cheap and never sell it.” “It is classic economics. The cure for high prices is high prices. It always works.” “The truth is that commodities are simpler to figure out than stocks. Nobody understands IBM, not even the chairman. IBM has hundreds of thousands of factors—employees, products, parts, suppliers, competitors, governments, balance sheets, and unions—that it has to deal with. Cotton, by contrast, is pretty straightforward. All you have to know about cotton is this: Is there too much or too little cotton? Cotton does not care who the chairman of the Federal Reserve is. The head of IBM has to know and care about such things. Cotton: Is there too much or too little? Now, figuring that out may not be easy at all, but the question itself is simple, and in the end it is the only question with which you have to be concerned.” “Greenspan refused to let the market work. He interfered with it in the boneheaded belief—along with a large dose of wishful thinking—that digging his friends out of trouble would be to everyone’s benefit. He was a short-term thinker who operated out of panic. . . . His greatest strengths were those of a politician. The way capitalism is supposed to work is that when people get in trouble, they fail. Smart, competent people come in, take over the assets, reorganize, and start again from a sound base. Greenspan’s way was to prop up failure. . . . [I]t is horrid morality . . . and unsound economics.” “Look back at the numerous pronouncements, the numerous projections Bernanke has made over the years, and it quickly becomes evident that he has seldom been right about anything. He knows little about economics or finance, he has no idea how markets work, and the only thing he truly understands about currency is how to print it. He has yet to figure out that the present crisis is not one of liquidity, but of solvency.” “Adam Smith said it takes a lot to bankrupt a country, but we are well along the path.” “As former astronaut Frank Borman, then CEO of Easter Airlines, said, ‘Capitalism without bankruptcy is like Christianity without hell.’” “You really have to work [in Singapore] to do well in school, and it seems to carry over into real life. I believe it is one reason Asians are doing so well in the world. America is not competitive, and you can trace it back to attitudes in homes and in schools.” “There is one tradition associated with [his daughter’s] American education that we did import from home when we took up residence in Singapore—no television. In the forty years that I lived in New York, I did not have a TV. I can think of no good reason to own one now.” “If it were up to me, borders of all countries would be open. It would promote a more natural ebb and flow, make every country more dynamic. New blood, new capital, new ideas. These always benefit a society and an economy. They make us more creative. Throughout history, the people most eager to immigrate have been those people who are ambitious, smart, and energetic, the kind of people you would want to hire.” “Is it not delightful to have friends come from distant quarters?” – Confucious “Retirees do not build factories, start businesses, and hire people. They are not those members of society who generate capital, nor do we expect them to be. Drawing on the social services to which they are entitled, aging citizens are consumers, not producers, of capital. It is young people of working age who produce it.” “I have learned to distrust the government—I recommend that every American do so.” “Truth is always the first casualty of war, it is said, and while that proposition has always been descriptive, it has now become weirdly prescriptive: the US political establishment has taken it to mean that war grants the government the license to lie. And what better way for elected officials to run the country than by keeping the nation perpetually at war, as it has been since 2001.” “The United States was founded on a principle that was decidedly foreign to the rest of the world in the late eighteenth century: that your rights are not something the government gives you, but something the government cannot take away. It was a revolutionary notion, and it took a revolution to make it real. Well, we are not that country anymore. We are now a country where the primacy of the individual is subordinated to the prerogatives of the state.” “Something like four trillion dollars’ worth of foreign currencies trade every day. It is the largest market in the world.” “When Nero took power in Rome in A.D. 54, Roman coins were either pure silver or pure gold. By A.D. 268, silver coins consisted of only .02 percent silver, and gold coins had disappeared because smart Romans by then were hoarding gold. In fact, this is the origin of the word ‘debase.’ Franklin Roosevelt did pretty much the same thing in 1933, making it no longer legal for Americans to exchange their dollars for gold. He confiscated gold and debased the value of the dollar by almost half, raising the price of gold from $20 to $35 an ounce.” “When governments run out of money, they do not stop spending. It was no different two thousand years ago than it is today. Politicians know no bounds. If Rome was running out of silver, if its economy was being mismanaged and it was running trade deficits, the only way to keep the good times rolling was to create more money. Think of Ben Bernanke in a toga. Adulterate the coinage, crank up the printing press—only the technology changes. Governments keep running out of money, and as long as that happens, bureaucrats and politicians will keep coming up with ways to create it. . . . The only solution that would work, in my opinion, would be to let individuals decide for themselves what to use for currency.” “The euro, which resulted from the Maastricht Treaty of 1992, was officially instituted on January 1, 1999. Notes and coins began circulating in 2002.” “The Maastricht Treaty stipulated that no member government could run a deficit of more than 3 percent in any one year. The French, in order to abide the contract, were the first to institute phony bookkeeping. We will not pay our pension obligations this year, we will pay them next year, they decided.” “The Chinese are among the best capitalists in the world. California is more Communist than China. Massachusetts is more socialist than China. I have run into many businesspeople who love doing business in China, because once they get approval to go forward, they are pretty much unfettered. And getting approval is not that hard. Of course, there are constraints and there are horror stories. But for the most part, people would rather do business in China than just about anywhere else in the world, including South Korea, including Europe, and certainly including the United States.” “The numbers you get out of any government are nothing more than a mirage.” “If I leave [my daughters] nothing else, I hope to leave them with the courage to dream, to pursue their passion whatever it might be, to dare to try even if they fail. I want them to understand that the only real failure is to not try, the only improper question the one unasked.”

  3. 5 out of 5

    Arvind Vijh

    Some good ideas- investments ideas for teh future- chinese tourism, north korea, myanamar. Bit of a rant agaianst the united states governrment. His blog has better and concise thoughts.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Thejas

    Adventures Of A Smart Man...book thoughts on Street Smarts ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- What would happen if I lived my dream? I would become Jim Rogers. The man made a ton of money on Wall street, rode in 52 countries in 22 months (including some dangerous countries) on a motorbike and later established a Guinness world record - driving a car with his fiance - 150k miles all over the world investing in capital markets in developing countries. Adventures Of A Smart Man...book thoughts on Street Smarts ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- What would happen if I lived my dream? I would become Jim Rogers. The man made a ton of money on Wall street, rode in 52 countries in 22 months (including some dangerous countries) on a motorbike and later established a Guinness world record - driving a car with his fiance - 150k miles all over the world investing in capital markets in developing countries. He was one of the first 300 people to visit communist China after the second world war in the 70s as a private citizen. He has written numerous best selling books on his adventures, investing and other wisdom. His latest offering Street Smarts is a great book that intertwines history, investing, adventure and politics. It is a roller coaster ride that shifts between these four categories seamlessly. Is this a memoir, self-help book, foreign policy tome or an investing book? It is difficult to pin that down. At the end, it may just leave you a bit more .....street smart. An amazing read.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Ivan Aguilar

    This book is phenomenal!!! There is a lot to be learned from this book. You can take it where you want to go with it. Classical History, Economics, International world affairs, raising a family or just life in Wall Street. In this book Jim Rogers invited us to think and do thinks "outside of the box" making emphasis on the philosophy that was once quote by Albert Einstein as "“The mind that opens to a new idea never returns to its original size.”

  6. 5 out of 5

    JR

    Ron and I really enjoyed listening to this book. A little bit of travel, mixed in with finance and politics, we found ourselves agreeing with most everything Rogers had to say here. Unintended Consequences had been good for explaining what happened in the financial meltdown; Rogers tells you what to do about it. He's a good storyteller, to boot. I highly recommend this to everyone.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Tyler Rongione

    To echo another readers "Erwin's" post found here: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/4... "Excellent. Couldn't put it down. Jim Rogers best thinking distilled. I've been a fan of Rogers since stumbling onto Adventure Capitalist back in 2003, and was fortunate enough to have one-one-one lunch with Rogers in 2005. Investment Biker and A Gift to My Children are also very much worth reading. I think you can skip A Bull in China and Hot Commodities. Many reviewers think Rogers comes off as arrogant an To echo another readers "Erwin's" post found here: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/4... "Excellent. Couldn't put it down. Jim Rogers best thinking distilled. I've been a fan of Rogers since stumbling onto Adventure Capitalist back in 2003, and was fortunate enough to have one-one-one lunch with Rogers in 2005. Investment Biker and A Gift to My Children are also very much worth reading. I think you can skip A Bull in China and Hot Commodities. Many reviewers think Rogers comes off as arrogant and disrespectful. People said the same thing about Steve Jobs. The problem is the disconnect between the old paradigm that may still be prevent, and the new paradigm that visionary has already accepted. The contradictions are interpreted as disrespect. Bottom like, Rogers correctly called the 2007/08 housing collapse back in 2003. He called Fanny Mae and Freddie Mac scams back in 2003. He's been pointing out the dangers of the US financial system since 1994. What were the so called "experts" right about? Jim Rogers suggests that if we're going to fix the USA, we would need to: * change the tax system * change the education system * health care and litigation reform * bring the troops home Of course that's not going to happen, so you should plan accordingly! Rogers also brings up the interesting Gov at Home movement that believes corruption could be reduced by having elected representatives telecommute from offices in their home districts. The citizens they represent can easily access them, while lobbyists would have to travel all over the state or nation to push their narrow interest. Rogers even suggests that a "military draft" or "jourer selection" mechanism would produce better elected representation than our current system. Personally, I'm even more interested in possibilities of Liquid Feedback as used by the German Pirate Party. Rogers talk about: * Growing up in Alabama, school at Yale and Oxford and Rowing * Life on Wall Street, path to Soros and Quantum Fund ** Commodities vs other Asset types ** How supply/demand actually works - high prices create supply ** Short Selling good for the market, but vilified ** How to invest --- do not diversify * Teaching at Columbia. * Tenure, Bad Debt, and Bubble of US Higher Ed * Recent lawsuit over the RICI (Rogers Int'l Commodity Index) * Need for US legal system reform * Opportunity in North Korea and Myanmar * Irreversible global money and power shifting to Asia * Problems with the US and how they should [but won't] be fixed" Along with some quotes I found notable: "Recessions, bankruptcy and financial failure are like forest fires. Devastating but they clean out the underbrush, they clear out the dead wood and when they die. The forest grows back even stronger from a healthier foundation" "Capitalism without bankruptcy is like Christianity without hell" - Frank borman "Let not him who is houseless pull down the house of another but let him labor diligently and build one for himself, thus by example assuring that his own shall be safe from violence when built" - Abraham Lincoln

  8. 5 out of 5

    Thomas Maluck

    I mostly enjoyed this book. There were a lot of informative segments about saving, spending, and futile inflation in Washington. There were a few segments where I had to do a double-take, and I don't know what to do with these observations but share them with you: Jim claims that immigration laws started in the 1920s "at the instigation of the Ku Klux Klan" and that "before that, our borders were open." I don't know what history books Jim has been reading, but prior to the 1920s, America had some I mostly enjoyed this book. There were a lot of informative segments about saving, spending, and futile inflation in Washington. There were a few segments where I had to do a double-take, and I don't know what to do with these observations but share them with you: Jim claims that immigration laws started in the 1920s "at the instigation of the Ku Klux Klan" and that "before that, our borders were open." I don't know what history books Jim has been reading, but prior to the 1920s, America had some tight restrictions regarding African, Chinese, and Native American populations, with special clauses added for different diseases (understandable) and disabilities (not so understandable). Elsewhere, Jim speculates about investing in North Korea, and that its partnership with China makes it a promising startup among emerging markets. He also notes that a reunified North and South Korea would make them a powerhouse that would have Japan shaking in its boots. I mostly agree! North Korea has mineable resources and cheap labor... some would say slave labor, depending on which part of the country, but okay. Jim also points to tourism of North Korea by South Korean men looking for a wife as another profitable industry. Look, Jim, I get that fluctuating markets and supply/demand are your specialty, but if all you have to say about North Korea is "kill the men with backbreaking labor, sell the women to their neighbors across the border," I'll leave the statecraft to someone else. Then again, why would an investor who glosses over slave labor in US history bother with the details of transforming a broken society? This book's about the money! There's a bit where he worries about overworking his children with hours of homework and not letting them play enough, compared to the American school system that doesn't have any homework for second graders... I had plenty of contempt for that portion. My elementary school years were marked with plenty of homework, some easy, some difficult, but never "none." Jim reflects on the value of his own childhood spent playing outdoors, but decides to err on the side of rigorous academics. Thanks for sharing, Jim? I think the neighbor who said his children will gravitate toward their interests whether or not they're academically drilled had the most sense. Never let school get in the way of or substitute for a good education. I also found it rich that he called out so many investment crooks, ponzi schemers, and incompetent yes-men legislators and lobbyists, then turned around and said Occupy Wall Street was too harsh on the one percent. If his ethics are clean, what was his problem with the movement? He identified the wealthy benefactors himself! Okay, now it sounds like all I did was rail on the book, but those bits were small compared to his insights over the course of decades. I don't have to like Jim personally to absorb the value of his economics lessons.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jim

    I don't know if I liked this book or not. I like Jim Rogers. In my opinion, you will know the definition of curmudgeon after you've read this book. His opinions and outlook on the world is unlike a lot of other writers. He emphasizes having a broad background that is steeped in knowing history as well as geography and a macroeconomic view of the world. He does not think locally. He gives the example a couple of times about how it's important to be able to make connections about the effect of an e I don't know if I liked this book or not. I like Jim Rogers. In my opinion, you will know the definition of curmudgeon after you've read this book. His opinions and outlook on the world is unlike a lot of other writers. He emphasizes having a broad background that is steeped in knowing history as well as geography and a macroeconomic view of the world. He does not think locally. He gives the example a couple of times about how it's important to be able to make connections about the effect of an earthquake in Chile on the price of copper. That's a bit beyond my ability but looking at history from an economic point of view is a different slant that explains the "why" things happened, instead of a story about heroes who prevailed or lost and villains who prevailed or lost. His macro view of the world caused him to sell his New York home and relocate with his kids to Singapore so that they could be fluent in Mandarin. That's quite a commitment. He's better traveled than most, obviously, and that's quite a statement about his outlook for Asia in the years going forward. I hope someone tells me if he decides to move back or move somewhere else. Meanwhile, I think I might spend a little bit more time on geography books (I didn't know a lot of copper mining occurred in Chile) as well as the history of China. I know that their civilization is as old as the Egyptians but that's about it for me.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Dani

    I bought this book on a $2 special offer because it had such high ratings. Boy I was sorely mistaken. This guy is very conceited. The world revolves around him. He is wonderful, everyone else is at fault, obviously because he made a ton of money from nothing. The overall flow of the book is suspect - tilting back and forth between investing tips and biography. There are no titillating secrets although I agree with many of his ideas, however he has an extremely limited focus. Really he just wants I bought this book on a $2 special offer because it had such high ratings. Boy I was sorely mistaken. This guy is very conceited. The world revolves around him. He is wonderful, everyone else is at fault, obviously because he made a ton of money from nothing. The overall flow of the book is suspect - tilting back and forth between investing tips and biography. There are no titillating secrets although I agree with many of his ideas, however he has an extremely limited focus. Really he just wants a to make money. Which is clearly obvious when you get to his flawed North Korea analysis. Oh and America is a mess so if you are rich you should just get out of dodge. The other part of his book where he is reminiscing on his life and children borders on being egotistical and narcissistic. How many of us can motorcycle around the world. Not many. Another example, in Singapore his HAD to have his kids in this certain school and because he had the money and influence he got them in. How revolutionary. In the end, I felt a little disgusted that my $2 went to someone who really didn't deserve my money.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Viktor Nilsson

    Brilliant and provocative, with a touch of humor and a big portion of self-distance, this is classic Jim Rogers. This book has many weaknesses to be sure, which other reviewers cover pretty well. But there's one good reason why I think you must read Jim Rogers: he see's the world like nobody else, he makes analyses like nobody else and he's a storyteller like nobody else (no other financial analyst at least). Simply put, he always provides a very fresh perspective of the world that's easy to gra Brilliant and provocative, with a touch of humor and a big portion of self-distance, this is classic Jim Rogers. This book has many weaknesses to be sure, which other reviewers cover pretty well. But there's one good reason why I think you must read Jim Rogers: he see's the world like nobody else, he makes analyses like nobody else and he's a storyteller like nobody else (no other financial analyst at least). Simply put, he always provides a very fresh perspective of the world that's easy to grasp. I was deeply disappointed at the narration of the audiobook however. In a deep bombastic voice Rogers just sounds rude and arrogant. I much prefer hearing his words in his native Alabama drawl.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Ryan

    Jim Rogers is basically a Wall Street millionaire who decided to travel the entire world, multiple times which gave him a unique perspective on the world and how he chooses investments. For example, he invested in Rwandan diamond mines and the Chinese economy far before others because he actually went Overall it's an easy read and finishes with some good feel stories about how he now dedicates his life to his family

  13. 5 out of 5

    Steven

    Highly recommended for anyone interested in the biography of a truly global macro investor. the analysis of the drivers behind political shortsightedness on immigration, trade economics and currency mismanagement is as sharp as it is concise

  14. 5 out of 5

    Alex Pal.

    This book is a collection of essays (that fit together very well). The essays are based on very different topics, from opinions, from biographical descriptions of the life of the author, and from the ideas of the author about investing. Overall, a very interesting book!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Ip Sing

    The book contains Rogers' views on the state of the markets, where he thinks the next big thing might be (he was right about North Korea opening up), the US government, his family. Thoroughly enjoyed reading his insights!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Siddharth

    Exciting! His different way of thinking is what makes some ppl in the finance community think he's arrogant. A lot of insightful stuff about various countries like North Korea, Myanmar n China. Worth a read!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Carl Isgren

    I've read two other books by Jim Rogers and like his style of storytelling. This book goes over some of the same ground as those others did. There are many stories I hadn't heard before and it gives a good insight into his view post the global financial crisis.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Fellini

    Рассказ о жизни и некоторые прогнозы на будущее. В общем-то, вся суть книги помещается в заголовок.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Dmitri Pavlov

    So so, too much I for one book ;)

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jason A

    Decent critique of the US relative to China

  21. 5 out of 5

    Yishen Kuik

    I've always liked Jim Roger's books on life, the markets and investment. This one has the additional twist of his perspective on life after reaching 70 and on being a Singapore resident

  22. 5 out of 5

    Travis Pearl

    Love reading his books. In this one he comes across a bit cranky and doomsdayish, but he has great perspective, tons of experience and an engaging writing style.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Jordan

    Jim certainly has his agenda, I think he hates all things American. But I am glad I listened to it. I learned a lot about international markets.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Karl Auburn

    older wiser, yet still having fun albeit in a car. I liked his description of Singapore and their education system. The take away is that kids make life way better than the 10th million in the bank

  25. 5 out of 5

    Prabhat

    Nothing extra ordinary about the book, it is average, a couple of things worth remembering, otherwise nothing exceptional.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Evan

    Jim Rogers wrote a very entertaining and informative book. He provides a healthy dose of skepticism about America's status and future. I think I would break down his book into three sections: his history, his investing philosophy, and his view of the future. His history is really fascinating. It really brings up important examples of successful people. He left rural Alabama to go to Yale. While going to college isn't a prerequisite for success, Yale was for him because it expanded his world view. Jim Rogers wrote a very entertaining and informative book. He provides a healthy dose of skepticism about America's status and future. I think I would break down his book into three sections: his history, his investing philosophy, and his view of the future. His history is really fascinating. It really brings up important examples of successful people. He left rural Alabama to go to Yale. While going to college isn't a prerequisite for success, Yale was for him because it expanded his world view. He then went to Oxford for two years, gaining an international perspective that others didn't have. His investing philosophy is to make investments in what you know, and make few of them. Approach making investments like you will only be able to make 25 of them throughout your entire life. Don't diversify. If you diversify, you might not lose a lot of money, but you won't get really rich. Jim spent years working 15 hour days to analyzing companies and trends. He can now use his experience to quickly identify trends. He sees trends in China, Myanmar, and North Korea. His view of the future was my favorite part of the book. His insights were really enlightening. China makes investments in infrastructure and in building goodwill with other countries (by overpaying for their resources-especially in Africa). America borrows money for social spending that won't generate any return in the future and is too burdened with debt to generate goodwill in Africa. Asian countries value saving and education; Singapore mandates their citizens to save 20% of their income. America has a negative savings rate and one of the lowest high school graduation rates among developed nations. In general, America has borrowed and printed money to avoid the pain of economic recessions. This delays the pain and will make the pain worse when we finally have to face it. A great book, and a short read. I finished it over a few days. I highly recommend it.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Amandacpr

    This was an excellent read, although I'm a little surprised by the sub-4 rating given to the book, which I presume is because Rogers doesn't hold particularly popular views about many issues. This is not a long read but you would find yourself stopping every now and then to digest his points to better glimpse into the thought process that enables him to make macroeconomic predictions with such prophetic accuracy. As I said, he's a bit of a maverick and his views are somewhat unpopular (I don't s This was an excellent read, although I'm a little surprised by the sub-4 rating given to the book, which I presume is because Rogers doesn't hold particularly popular views about many issues. This is not a long read but you would find yourself stopping every now and then to digest his points to better glimpse into the thought process that enables him to make macroeconomic predictions with such prophetic accuracy. As I said, he's a bit of a maverick and his views are somewhat unpopular (I don't suppose subscribing to the opinions of the herd helps you manage anywhere near a 4200% return on your hedge fund over any period of time, let alone ten years). He isn't afraid to call a spade a spade, and has zero hesitation in calling people idiots (most frequently what makes up the recent US administrations). His analyses are almost always years and decades long, almost like spotting slow but major tectonic movements which the average man wouldn't take the pains to think about because it doesn't affect him 'right now'. His observations are insightful, he's very deeply intuitive about economies and markets, and here and there he offers up a couple of ideas that are quite revolutionary. Essentially he just sheds a lot of clarity on what makes an economy tick and what would destroy one. This was a really worthwhile read.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Nathik

    Street Smarts by Jim Rogers is a mix of travelogue, memoirs and a lot of market wisdom. Obviously, Jim doesn't reveal his trading secrets. However, he will teach us a lot of common sense(You will be surprised to learn how many so called conventional wisdom lacks common sense). I found most of arguments compelling yet simplistic without many technical jargons. He does come across as a sino-phile but he does provide strong arguments why he bullish about china. He does takes you around the globe, d Street Smarts by Jim Rogers is a mix of travelogue, memoirs and a lot of market wisdom. Obviously, Jim doesn't reveal his trading secrets. However, he will teach us a lot of common sense(You will be surprised to learn how many so called conventional wisdom lacks common sense). I found most of arguments compelling yet simplistic without many technical jargons. He does come across as a sino-phile but he does provide strong arguments why he bullish about china. He does takes you around the globe, discussing about a range of topics: 1.) Raise of East Asia 2.) Why Short selling is good 3.) Predicts the decline of the United States (Provides few solutions as well) 4.) Crisis of Paper money 5.) Skepticism on the raise of India 6.) Investment opportunities in Myanmar and North korea 7.) Interestingly, he is not in favor of diversification so the sake of diversification. There is common saying 'Diversity reduces Adversity". But Jim does provide a compelling argument against it and gives a solid advice to invest in what you know. Overall, a good and quick read. It shows Jim's perception of the future of Global economy. I really enjoyed reading it.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Rohan

    Another awesome book from Jim Rogers. I am surprised that there are so few ratings and reviews on this book. Jim is one of the very few people related to the finance industry who actually "Walks the talk". I became a true fan just by reading his "Adventure Capitalist" and this book just cemented those feelings further. Like in interviews and his earlier books, Jim comes across as crass and very arrogant in his views and opinions but that is exactly what I had liked about him. For me the best thin Another awesome book from Jim Rogers. I am surprised that there are so few ratings and reviews on this book. Jim is one of the very few people related to the finance industry who actually "Walks the talk". I became a true fan just by reading his "Adventure Capitalist" and this book just cemented those feelings further. Like in interviews and his earlier books, Jim comes across as crass and very arrogant in his views and opinions but that is exactly what I had liked about him. For me the best things about the book were : His views on immigrants, His brief investing encounters in various countries during his travelling days, Historical changes in various Markets all over the world and his time with George Soros. I kind of also like his opinions on the role FED chief's played before, during and after the 2007-08 crisis. Although at times, I did feel that his enthusiasm toward China was overly optimistic. He talks about the negative side of China very briefly. I thought the title of the book was little off: This book doesn't exactly show that he is street smart nor does it claim that it will make reader street smart. Nevertheless, this was a page turner. Highly recommended.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Brad Harris

    Listening to this book was thoroughly enjoyable. I finished in only a couple of sittings. Quick but super informative. One of the most informative moments was a segment where he explained what a hedge fund was. This was a structure that I could never really understand or get a good explanation of. Now I know. After listening to this I am deciding to dip my toe into foreign markets, currencies and also ETFs (or that's my plan at this moment, who knows). This simplified those things a bit and the Listening to this book was thoroughly enjoyable. I finished in only a couple of sittings. Quick but super informative. One of the most informative moments was a segment where he explained what a hedge fund was. This was a structure that I could never really understand or get a good explanation of. Now I know. After listening to this I am deciding to dip my toe into foreign markets, currencies and also ETFs (or that's my plan at this moment, who knows). This simplified those things a bit and the author give some real life experiences to help solidify my understanding. I now feel comfortable investing in these things, and I never did before. The author tells about his travels and experiences and he sounds like he's had a thrilling life and I've been inspired to make some changes to mind.

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