Cramer on Today Show

I was towelling off my head, so I may have misheard this at 7am, but:

Did I hear Jim Cramer on the Today Show declaring this to be the start of a new Bull Market?

Mark today’s date:  3/17/06.

I suggest we revisit this in 6 months, when I will either a) eat crow, or 2) Point out that JJC topticked a major reversal for the 2nd time in 6 years  . . .


UPDATE:  March 17, 2006  5:43pm 

The WSJ’s MarketBeat points to blogginwallstreet’s analysis of all the Mad Money’s stock picks: 

Cramer’s Calls a Crap Shoot

The Cult of Personality debate continues  . . .

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Discussions found on the web:
  1. Major Tom commented on Mar 17

    No fucking way. He called a ‘new bull’ in March
    of 2000?

    Wow. I’m speechless.

    Are you serious???

  2. B commented on Mar 17

    I sure as heck can’t believe that. Or can I? I’ve got the quote somewhere in print but Cramer also said in 2000 that Sun was the most attractive stock in the universe. It was one of his EXTREME statements. Sun was trading at $65 and now it’s $4. And he tried to jump on that pig and many others with his comments many times these drops were great buying opps.

    Can anyone explain something to me? I’ve been watching the P/C for ages and there was a reading on the index P/Cs of 0.25 yesterday. That reading has never been registered EVER as far as I can see. Is there some OE phenomenon I might be missing?

  3. Major Tom commented on Mar 17

    Man – I swear. I turned on his radio show once and
    he was yapping about how smart he was for
    avoiding the tech downturn in 2000.

    Would be nice to see how his hedge fund buddies
    are doing now. Selling hard and fast.

  4. emd commented on Mar 17

    LOL…. man, I like your blog. Cramer is a circus performer.

  5. Uncle Jack commented on Mar 17

    Fantastic. I’ve never made a big deal about fading someone’s call, but this has to be sure sign that the downturn is near.

  6. B commented on Mar 17

    Everyone like this rally? Biggest sector gainer? HOMEBUILDERS. Up 8%.

  7. Uncle Bob commented on Mar 17

    Opinions are like a–holes, almost everybody has one, you can’t smell your own and the other guy’s usually stinks!

    Cramer also called GOOG to be at 600 this spring, maybe so.

  8. B commented on Mar 17

    Oh sh*t, the minute I say that Pisani quotes Robert Toll who says the downside is overhyped to the housing market. Now, I’m not taking sides but has anyone looked at when Big Bob and his brother sold something like half a billion dollars worth of stock? Last year near the homebuilders peak. He’s an old man. If he thought that, why did he sell? He doesn’t need the money. He’s rich and he’s got one foot in the grave. Exaggeration but I can’t help but puke when I see this shoddy corporate governance and some snake oil salesman who pumped his company’s outlook as it went from $60 to 28 and he sold at something like $58. That really infuriates me.

  9. Barry Ritholtz commented on Mar 17

    Not a new bull — but he was very bullish back in March 2000 — remember that acronym of his for Qualcom, Yahoo, et. al. ?

  10. Bynocerus commented on Mar 17


    The last time the put call ratio hit 24% was in the early/mid 80’s. Awesome.

    Money quote from the article: “That’s why, despite the 80% increase in the Nasdaq last year, we are looking at another record year now.” JJC, 2/29/2000

    The market really looks like it wants to go up this AM, but since it’s OE day, my impression is that the NAS will pin at 2300, the S&P @ 1310 and the Dow @ 11250-11300. Next week will be “fun.”

  11. Barry Ritholtz commented on Mar 17

    BERQY — Broadcom, eBay, Research In Motion, Qualcomm and Yahoo

    which has since become GERQY with Google swapping out for Broadcom

  12. Michael C. commented on Mar 17

    The extremely low and skewed p/c ratio was the result of a dividend capture strategy for the SP from my info. So it is definitely not a “pure” p/c ratio figure.

    Also, Cramer put up an article today on RM that we can forget about the Nasdaq for now. Guess that means the tech underperformance is just about over. And when the madman starts writing 10 articles a day on BRCM & MRVL, that will be the key to sell.

  13. Bynocerus commented on Mar 17

    Michael C.

    You’re absolutely right on the dividend strategy. What scares me, though, is that the play for the S&P dividend is greener than Kermit. Once you factor in transaction and assignment costs, your best hope is to just break even. I have a hard time believing the institutions are dumb enough to try this silliness, which by default leaves it to retail odd lot traders and speculators – not a good thing.

  14. Tim commented on Mar 17

    Hmmm…didn’t watch The Today Show, but I just received an alert that on Wed, 15th, Cramer sold 12,500 of his TSCM shares. It’s the old saying, do what I tell you to do and don’t worry about what I’m actually doing. ;)

  15. Brian commented on Mar 17

    I have this gimmick I’ve worked out. Watch the Lightning Round. Whatever sectors all the callers are asking about (at least those who get through to talk to him) – SELL. Buy the ones they aren’t talking about.

    Lately they seem to be calling about chips and optical stuff.

  16. Brian commented on Mar 17

    PS: this goes along with my other gimmick: the Kudlow Fade. Take the opposite side of anything he suggests. Last year he hated energy, commodities, and Brazil (Lula the Lefty!). So I bought some. Um, good call there dude.

    What does he hate this year? Haven’t been able to watch as much.

  17. jw commented on Mar 17

    the real story about Cramer, circa 2000:

    He was jumping up and down bullish through the better part of the 3rd quarter in 2000.

    Of course the market tanked Q1, but there was a huge dead cat bounce leading up to labor day.

    That was when Todd Harrison turned very publicly bearish.

    Despite Todd Harrison’s line in the sand type call, after Labor Day 2000 Cramer penned a piece essentially explaining the Bull train was leaving the station. More importantly he slimed anyone stupid enough to be short, predicting they would be a smoking hole in the ground.

    Then, suddenly over that weekend, he pulled an absolute 180 degree turn. Total reversal.

    To his credit he posted a serious missive outlining his new– totally bearish– view.

    At first he was rather vague about the reason for the about face, but in an AOL chat later that week he responded to an inquiry about his abrupt, startling shift: simply put, he had been voted down by his partners who disagreed with his bullish call. He further explained they had made a bundle YTD, esp in the Q1 blowoff top, and were each facing the biggest payday of their lives with their looming fiscal year end just around the corner (as he explained, hedge funds lock in that 20% one day a year). Paraphrasing further, there was no reason to risk it, and he felt responsibility to others in the firm who had a hard earned bonus coming, and that sort of thing.

    In essence he was towing the line for sake of the other managers and employees of the hedge fund.

    But he did not truly adorn the Grizz outfit until, lo and behold, the market started to carve out what was becoming an obvious “lower high”.

    By October he was mercilous toward anyone online or on TV spouting bullish drivel.

    And of course we now know right about that time something triggered his decision to “retire” and lock in that famous 24%-after-fees-for-14-years” track record (said he: 20 hour days, wanted to see his kids, etc).

    Cramer is a piece of work, no doubt. But everything he says is on the record, even available in the archives. And the guy is a genius, even if some people think he’s a lunatic.

    Sometimes he’s a great contrary indicator, sometimes he’s a valuable tool because he’ll relay to us mere mortals what insti’s have been whispering in his ear (a window on that world otherwise unavailable), and sometimes he absolutely nails a big shift, a fantastic thesis, or some quirky detail nobody else has noticed yet.

    But the Booyahians kneeling at the Cramer altar need their head examined; at the other end of the spectrum, the hate-cramer-24/7 folks need to get a life.

  18. Michael C. commented on Mar 17

    >>>I just received an alert that on Wed, 15th, Cramer sold 12,500 of his TSCM shares<<< The guy owns 2 million shares. Maybe he just wanted some chump change in his bank account for his upcoming vacation. What's the big deal.

  19. Bob A commented on Mar 17

    from 2000/2003 Cramer called the bottom on every minor/major bounce for 3 years. if you say it enough times, sooner or later you will be right.

  20. B commented on Mar 17

    First off, I don’t feel terribly compelled to do digging to support this statement but I do know for a fact Cramer had repeatedly told people to hop onto some of those train wrecks after they cratered. They were buying opportunities post 2000 according to his commentary. Unfortunately they were down 30% but many went down another 60%. Sometmes he is a contrarian and sometimes he is not? ie, He is right no more than he is wrong which is posted on in numerous articles which actually track the facts. He has not beat the averages since his show went live as I recall. Hell, in a bull market, I can do that by throwing darts at a board of high relative strength stocks. Loved his logic for Google’s evaluation. Wall Street math. Something you’d never see a quant or technician say. But then he discounts both as foolish. Outrageous unsustainable PE * outrageous unsustainable earnings = $600 at a point in time that was on the tail end of one of the longest bull cycles in the last hundred years WHEN risk management tells a smart investor to be prudent. What was Ritholtz saying at the same time Cramer was pumping Google to $600 and took a huge bath? Be careful and conservative. That’s why I like reading the posts from others and from him and I don’t subscibe to RM to listen to things I know to be totally false.

    I especially like how he discounts technicians and quants. Especially since nearly every one was totally bearish as early as 1998 and Cramer was telling people to buy dips post 2000. It’s even more ironic because wasn’t he a broker for Goldman? You know, Goldman makes nearly all of its money trading. Quants and technicians provide the trading vehicles, guidance and models for all of that money. Every single nickle. I’m not being anti Cramer. I’m saying that there are too many people on Wall Street that have no track record of prudence in times of high risk, which usually means they cannot beat the market. Yet, they are constantly recycled and we listen to their gibberish time and time and time over. It’s like having someone who flunked math as your high school calculus teacher. But it is accepted and they flourish on Wall Street.

    Cramer is a genius? That one I would buy. But being a genius does not guarantee one to be a prudent speculator. The past is riddled with genius that lost everything. I don’t doubt he is extremely smart. But, usually people outside of the bell curve have some idiosyncracies with their behavior. We all know what our demons are. A little psychoanalysis of a personality profile that is not uncommon on Wall Street. I’d tend to imagine this fits the perma bulls as a general rule. It’s teh compulsive persona. From Atlantic City to Wall Street is a short walk for people who become enthralled with gambling at a young age. You know, many personality types with idiosyncracies end up in a career that sort of fuels their compulsion. I don’t think it’s a coincidence those personality types end up on Wall Street.

  21. Bob A commented on Mar 17

    I think the main point to take away from this is when Cramer is on tv, it’s a good time to take a shower.

  22. Ned commented on Mar 17

    Because if you listen you will take a bath…

  23. matt commented on Mar 17

    Re: Brian’s Kudlow Fade….Brilliant! I wish I’d thought of it. For years, I’ve systematically ingrored his every statement. It never occured to me to take the opposite side. Kudos on the Kudlow trade!

  24. EKC commented on Mar 17

    Whatever your sentiments towards him, ya gotta admit, he mints money (if only for the ST trade). I actually saw him live, on his show. He’s every bit has hyper as you see him on air. Great personality, but he must drive his wife NUTS (she must be on something to calm the nerves).
    During a commercial break, the guy was taking symbols left and right, and rattling his two cents back to the audience. One guy actually, threw him for a loop (some po’dunk no-namer), and Cramer gave the guy an auto-graphed book. Classic.

  25. angryinch commented on Mar 17

    I didn’t read him calling this “a new bull market.” Seems like we’ve been going up for 3 years.

    But he did say we have entered a “virtuous circle” yesterday.

    That’s a pet phrase of his. It means that you can now buy stocks and be confident they will be heading up.

    The problem is, Cramer’s “virtuous circles” have been anything but over the past couple of years. He does seem to have an amazing knack of top-ticking the market when he calls it “virtuous” and “exquisite” (another of his pet words.)

    Here are his last four “virtuous” or “exquisite” calls:

    6/28/04: SPX immediately dropped 7.5% in 7 weeks.
    3/4/05: SPX immediately dropped 7.5% in 7 weeks.
    7/13/05: SPX gained 1% over 2 weeks, then dropped 6.3% in 2 months.
    3/17/06: ??????????????

    Small sample, to be sure. But rather consistent. To be fair, the market has ultimately climbed higher. But as far as timing goes, when Crammer says it’s time to buy, it probably isn’t.

    “Virtuous circle alert! Money comes in, brokers go higher. Money comes in, supply is tight, demand is strong. That’s what happens in bull markets. Remember that term? Remember when you can identify a tape as an up one? Take a look at this action today. What we are seeing is typical bull-market behavior, very different from what we saw even a month ago.”

    “Don’t look now, real estate, but stocks are catching up to you. It’s not in the bank yet, but we are getting some pretty nice action in mutual funds, with some up mid-single-digits and others up double-digits. Stocks are very much a self-fulfilling enterprise. When they get momentum, you get more money in. More money in, more momentum. It’s the virtuous circle.”

    This market’s exploding upward. This rally, a textbook rally embracing all major elements of the market, is truly exquisite…This rally couldn’t be happening at a better moment. It is clear, once again, that those who pulled out in January were wrong. The averages are starting to make a nice move here…It’s one of those nice times worth savoring. We are not particularly overbought. We are coming into the spring and some warmer weather. Retail’s good. Things don’t align themselves this well all that often. Enjoy.

    “Looks like the virtuous circle is on again.”

  26. Zack commented on Mar 17

    I have to defend the man. I’ve been reading TSC since, I guess, 1998 and he has made me a tremendous amount of money.

    If you have your Joe Granville filters on, think for yourself, look at a chart, and book a profit every now and again, he had you in some huge winners.

    I ignore whole classes of his calls, things like tech/biotech/pharma/retail, simply because I have no edge.

    Now, to his credit, he had you in Encana (and energy generally) as early as December 2004. CAT, Terex, he had you long gold in late 2004 and never wavered on that. Long Aqua America (I had like 12 points in that) and caught the whole water theme.

    You caught the entire move in the brokers. In tech, he had you in Marvell in the 40s, if not earlier. You could have had 20 points in Broadcom. You made several points in Motorola, believe he had you in it in the high teens.

    Redundant to talk about Nabors and Transocean and Chesapeake and BHP Billiton.

    If you were a fund investor, he had you in Fidelity Contrafund. You could have done much worse.

    If you had the sense to sell something every now and again, you did great. Using some of his themes, none of his specific stocks, our IRAs were up over 70% each last year. My main account was up 24%. I had 6 winners and no losers from June until the end of the year.

    Time will have to judge the most recent calls.

    Just recently, he’s been on the telco-tech theme. I can’t make a thesis for it so I won’t play.

    He nearly bottom-ticked the chemicals with a thesis of falling gas prices into the spring. If you follow the EIA numbers, it was clear this had the potential to happen. But I’m playing away from DD, DOW, etc and already have a nice placid 20% each in an ag chemical and a cement company, which are most sensitive to feedstock costs and seem to have run ahead of the big chemicals.

    He seems to want you back in the oil/gas complex for the longer term. Here we are at what should be the low point for seaonality. I can buy the thesis, though I plan to wait a little while longer.

    Yes, he roils stuff that shouldn’t be roiled. You can watch some microcap ticking up 5% in the afterhours on his comments and know that some bagholders are being made. Evolution in action.

    Are there any figures on how the charitable trust account did last year? That would seem to me the true measure.

    BR: I concur!

  27. Eclectic commented on Mar 18

    On the Cramer spot on NBC news tonight:

    -he didn’t throw a chair
    -he didn’t bite the head off anything
    -he only used a little of the ‘clip-the-syl-a-speedy-talk’
    -he didn’t say booyah

    I can only perceive all this to have been a subtextual bearish signal.

  28. Eclectic commented on Mar 18

    Zack… just read every comment on this Cramer item, and I’ll say yours seemed to be the most reasonable.

    As I read yours it became clear to me that you’re much like a chetah. They run down their prey and then know to eat the liver first… because soon a lion or hyena may come to take away the carcass.

    I’d be interested to know your opinions on the economy and markets over the next few months.

  29. Idaho_Spud commented on Mar 18

    You’re a permabull if you’ve called two of the last zero bull markets :)

  30. Ned commented on Mar 18

    I agree that Zack is using Cramer as he or any wacko stock savant (guru) should be used.
    But the key is Zack is making the calls, not Jimbo.
    Well done.
    Trailing stops would seem to help too.

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