Sure, it seems almost surreal. The market plunges and then comes right back. Roaring back. Like a stock car coming from last to first at the
this weekend. Noisy, exciting, blistering.
What gives? It's called a bull market.
Yes, in bull markets you have to take advantage of intraday ugliness and get in. During the 1985-1986 bull phase we had these moves constantly, and we were mired in the mid-1700s at that time.
Did you miss this one? Don't worry, there will be plenty of these shakeout moves. Today seemed so ugly at the beginning:
taken down to a buy from a strong buy, the
"there will be weakness" morning comment. Food riots in Jakarta. Asian problems. A
escort; another Secret Service agent who may or may not have seen Monica talking "policy" with The Big He. Iraqi saber-rattling.
talking about a parable (parody?) about the Titanic and the market.
Blah, blah, blah.
So the market opens down, the put buyers emerge from the rafters, slamming the tech stocks, slamming the indices. Everybody decides, yeah, get out when the getting is good. Typical of the pattern that had existed before this rally began.
And then the market reverses. Hard full rudder. And it misses the iceberg. Unsinkable Molly Brown; whatever other analogy that can be used to discredit Biggs et. al.
As I said this morning on
Good Morning America
, this market is headed higher. I used 9000 by July as a target, something that I discussed extensively with the Trading Goddess before I blabbed it on the segment. But I did that out of frustration that if I don't give a target people won't think I am serious about the direction. And I am. Deadly serious. So is she.
Here are some more rules that made me big money in the 1985-1986 period. Intraday the futures swings can make some of your favorite stocks darn cheap. Leave a limit order well below the market and discover the wonders of a great intraday basis when you get whacked by a scared seller.
Fast money traders should try to grab some of the more heavily shorted (put-bought) stocks. You know, the ones that you like that the bears need down, but won't stay down. Finally, go after stocks that have been tearing and are facing a momentary scary pullback, not the ones that act well during the decline. Those are the toughest to buy and the most rewarding.
James J. Cramer is manager of a hedge fund and co-chairman of TheStreet.com. At time of publication his fund is long Microsoft. Under no circumstances does the information in this column represent a recommendation to buy or sell stocks. Mr. 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 welcomes your feedback, emailed to