You know why so few fund managers tell it like it is? Because the penalties of revealing what you really do are absurdly high. The pain of the consequence of being wrong -- for all of the world to see -- is simply too great for most people.
And don't I know it.
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This weekend on our
TV show, we were grilling
-- one of the bigger hits of my career. Heck, one of the bigger hits of anybody's career. We believe in total disclosure on our show. If I have a position on a stock we are covering, I reveal it.
So I said, candidly, that I had sold Qualcomm. I had left it at about 390. There are bulls, bears, pigs, hogs and mammoth boars. And when it came to Qualcomm, I considered myself in the later genus. The stock is now at 430.
Immediately after the show, which aired at 10 a.m. EST on Saturday, I received a half-dozen emails about what an ignoramus I was for selling Qualcomm! I showed a couple to my wife, who couldn't believe the vitriol associated with this winning sale. I figured it would die down. But since then, I have gotten about 10 more heat-seeking missiles about what a doofus I was for selling Qualcomm. I imagine that every day it goes up, I will get more.
Given the heat, is it any wonder why fund managers fudge and hem and haw and hide behind crummy disclosure requirements -- twice a year for Pete's sake! The only thing worse than doing something wrong is telling people about it!
: Sure could use some bears on television to complement this
decline. I hate how many bulls there are right now, but it is the time of the year when people seem to like the market very much. ... Selling some
as I don't believe the settlement talks. But, remember, how many people told you to bail at 87 after the decision came down? Proud not to be one of those nonbelievers.
James J. Cramer is manager of a hedge fund and co-founder of TheStreet.com. At time of publication, his fund was long Microsoft. His fund often buys and sells securities that are the subject of his columns, both before and after the columns are published, and the positions that his fund takes 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 at