Short squeeze perhaps?
Despite what the talking heads are saying -- lack of follow-through, disappointing action, etc. -- everybody I know is focused on
and the bizarrely positive action of today's trading.
There were two great trades this year in AOL. One was to buy it ahead of when it was added to the
. The other was to sell it short when it was added, because the stock fell precipitously after the addition was finished.
I am now theorizing that many people put on the latter trade last night after the S&P reweighted AOL, forcing the index funds to buy. They shorted the close, figuring the stock would return to 103, where it was before the rebalancing occurred. Certainly made sense.
These shorts were shocked, as I was, that the stock didn't open down more today. We had to scramble to buy back the stock that we sold at a gain of less than a quarter-point. Not much bread there. But the action was way too positive.
Others were even less swift. Couple that with some aggressive institutional buying, and you end up being squeezed like a Florida orange in a Tropicana factory.
Amazingly, no matter how high this stock has gone, the squeeze has persisted. We're talking concentrated pulp now, ready for the freezer!
I've felt the squeeze before. (Please see
Cramer Screams Through a Short Squeeze.) Sometimes paying up 10 is the only way to be able to get out of the juicer.
Phew. AOL continues to be the roughest short in the business.
and the entire staff of
National Magazine Award
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of the magazine biz.
James J. Cramer is manager of a hedge fund and co-founder of TheStreet.com. At the time of publication, his fund was long America Online, though positions may change at any time. Under no circumstances does the information in this column represent a recommendation to buy or sell stocks. Cramer's writings provide insights into the dynamics of money management and are not a solicitation for transactions. While he cannot provide investment advice or recommendations, he invites you to comment on his column by sending a letter to TheStreet.com.