Rogers, who is short Fannie Mae shares, is also short Citigroup (C, news, msgs) and highly negative on its prospects, too.
“Technically, it’s bankrupt, with gigantic off-balance-sheet derivatives positions whose value it cannot possibly know,” he says. Though he believes some large banks can and will go under in the next year or two under the weight of billions of dollars worth of bad loans and blown-up derivatives positions, he doubts the government will allow Citi or Fannie to fail. “They’ll nationalize them in some way. It’s wrong, but they can’t let the two largest lenders in the nation go down.”
The fund manager, who has traveled extensively in emerging markets and lives part of the year in Asia, says sovereign wealth funds in Abu Dhabi and Singapore that recently made large investments in Citigroup and UBS AG (UBS, news, msgs) are likely to lose a lot of money on their ploys. “They’re making a big mistake; these banks have many more problems still ahead. They should wait until these companies are really on the ropes a few years from now . . . and trading at $5 a share.”
Well, with Citi down about 90% to $7, they might just get their chance. . .