Thursday, January 7, 2010

Betting Against China

Very interesting article in the NYTimes today detailing crack short-seller Jim Chanos and his growing unease with the Chinese economy. At this point I don't have a particular take on this issue but I think it makes sense to be aware of the Chanos concern. He has gone against the crowd before in a big way (Enron) and profited big-time. At the same time Jimmy Rogers' comment is also worth noting:

I find it interesting that people who couldn't spell China 10 years ago are now experts on China,” said Jim Rogers, who co-founded the Quantum Fund with George Soros and now lives in Singapore. “China is not in a bubble.”
Colleagues acknowledge that Mr. Chanos began studying China’s economy in earnest only last summer and sent out e-mail messages seeking expert opinion.

The bottom line is that we are still in very difficult economic waters. It wouldn't take much to tip us back into the financial danger zone. If the Chinese run into economic problems in the near term all bets are off for the rest of us. The situation deserves monitoring.

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