Disappointed By Modi, Commodities Honcho Jim Rogers Exits India Investments

02/09/2015 4:47 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST
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SINGAPORE - JULY 05: Jim Rogers, chairman of Beeland Interests Inc., speaks at the Nomura Asia Equity Forum, in Singapore, on Thursday, July 5, 2007. Rogers, co-founder with George Soros of the Quantum Hedge Fund, is investing in Taiwan on expectations this week's elections will install a government favorable to closer ties with China. (Photo by Munshi Ahmed/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Investment guru Jim Rogers has said he's sold off his shares in Indian companies as the Narendra Modi government "has been all about talk and no action" and the Indian markets "lacks any new drivers to propel it." Rogers said in an interview to Mint, in Singapore, that he'd waited for nearly a year-and-a-half since the Modi government came to power last May for reforms--such as the Indian rupee becoming fully convertible--but was now convinced that these weren't going to happen in the immediate future.

"I, as an investor, have decided to move on to other places, partly also because stock markets are not going to be particularly good for the next year or two, " said Rogers, "And if I am going to be at some place, I would rather be at a market that is either depressed, or where dramatic changes are taking place."

Roger's comments come even as India has taken key steps to attract foreign investments. Arun Jaitley accepted a recommendation by an independent panel to absolve foreign institutional investors from paying a Minimum Alternate Tax. To calm fears on the volatility in the Indian stock markets, RBI Governor General Raghuram Rajan, whom Rogers in the interview referred to as the 'best in the world,' recently said that India wouldn't shy from selling off some of its dollar reserves to stabilize world markets.

However Roger's pessimism isn't unfounded. Weak GDP growth and muted manufacturing output continue to plague India's economic reforms inspite of inflation being at record lows.

" India has very high debt-to-GDP (gross domestic product) ratio—it is higher than many countries," said Rogers, "Studies have shown that when countries have a high debt-to-GDP ratio, it is difficult to grow at a reasonable rate. I don’t really see much going for India right now except Modi, who is not doing anything, when he should be or could be doing a lot."

Commodities trading guru and hedge fund manager, Jim Rogers--the chairman of Rogers Holdings Ltd-- added that he wasn't a great fan of tech companies as he didn't understand them. "Now, this bubble is all over the world–China, India… Now there are hundreds of entrepreneurs in their garages who think they are worth millions and billions of dollars. They are worth that right now, but will they be worth so much when the next turmoil comes? "

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