Manufacturing, Investing in Africa, and Investment Havens

Listeners’ Questions, Peter’s Answers- August 4, 2011

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Kaz from Toronto, Ontario (CA)
When you say we need more manufacturing jobs, do you mean more blue-collar jobs, or jobs that don’t need physical labor but are in involved in producing tangible things?

Tim from Alvarado, TX
Has your outlook on the United States impending financial crisis changed any?

Nathan from San Francisco, CA
Do you consider investing in many firms with significant exposure in Africa? Are you aware of any promising for-profit companies involved in community water supply development or commercial farming there? How do you asses the political risks for private investors in agriculture?

Sandra from Vancouver, British Columbia, (CA)
We pulled our Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) investments out of the market and parked it in money market funds. What we could transfer out into cashable Guaranteed Investment Certificates (GICs) we did, to weather the coming storm. We still have a chunk sitting in money market funds that are subject to considerable fees to convert to GICs. Is the money market just as dangerous as the market in a crash?

Tom from Beverly Hills, CA
My understanding is that the chief problem with our currency is the quantity and who controls that quantity. Wouldn’t a gold backed dollar give considerable control to the gold producers of the world such as China? And hasn’t gold standard failed many times in the past? What’s different if we do it again?