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Buy Yuan and Beware of Boys, Rogers Tells His Daughters

Dora Cheok, News Editor
Wednesday, 20 May 2009 | 4:05 AM ET

Say the name Jim Rogers, and these thoughts might come to mind — billionaire, China, author, adventure capitalist, George Soros' one-time partner, investment guru, man in bow tie ... but how about father?

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And father he is to two little girls, Happy age 6, and Baby Bee age 1. He's even written a book for them — A Gift to My Children: A Father's lessons for Life and Investing.

And what investment advice would he impart to his daughters? Rogers sat down and shared with CNBC.com some of his thoughts on this, beginning with, buy renminbi if you get the chance.

(Watch the Jim Rogers interview on currencies)

"I own the Chinese renminbi. It's not that easy to buy and sell the renminbi because it’s a blocked currency. But I own it and every chance I get to get some more renminbi, I do so." Rogers says.

"The renminbi is eventually going to be the next reserve currency of the world. Twenty years from now, perhaps fifteen years from now, the Chinese are opening up there currency more and more every month, every year. And that’s going to continue ... who knows how high it will go," Rogers adds.

With China, currently the largest creditor nation in the world, and with a balance of trade surplus to boot, Rogers would rather own the renminbi (also called the yuan) than many other currencies.

But he adds that he doesn't understand why China has a blocked currency. Currently, there are restrictions on money leaving or entering the country and as such, the renminbi is not fully convertible.

"China has not made many serious mistakes in the past two to three decades but this is one of them. I don't know why they still have a blocked currency. This is not 1979, it’s not even 1999. It's 2009 and China doesn't need to do that any more," Rogers says.

More of Jim Rogers' Outlook on CNBC.com

In the end though, all the renminbi that Rogers collects will go to Happy and Bee. If there was one thing he'd drum into them, what would that be?

"Think for yourself, be very independent in your thinking, do not listen to other people and beware of boys — they need you more than you need them!" Rogers quips.

Beware of boys like himself in his youth? Rogers laughs and says that's exactly why he knows this.

"On Wall Street, there’s nothing like overcharged young men, or overcharged young women either I’m sure, that will lead you to losses through inexperience and exuberance. When I was a young investor on Wall Street I thought I knew everything. I learnt the hard way that I did not know everything. But you know, it’s hard to tell that to a 24 year-old or even a 34 year-old sometimes," Roger says.

Rogers wants his children to learn about life and the world by living in different places. He thinks that by experiencing what the world has to offer, you will learn more about your own country. Traveling gives you perspective. It gives you something to compare. It shows you the things your country does well and the things it does badly. "There’s nothing like learning about the world to teach you about yourself, about your own country and about anything else."

Jim Rogers' parting words — "I went around the world on my motorcycle when I was 47. I went around the world in my car when I was 57. I want my daughters to do the same. I encourage them to get out and see the world. I’m sure I’m going to be terrified and worried to death, but I hope they will get out there all the same."

I can just see him handing out passports to Happy and Bee, shotgun in hand. Boys, beware!

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