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Rummaging through the trash in front of one of those overnight trading firms, I came across a torn, dogeared page of what looks to be a trading manual.

It was written in the form of a poker schedule, I guess for easy remembering. Here's what it said:

  • A pair: good earnings news; toss it back.
  • Two pair: good earnings news plus earnings-per-share guidance positive; your call.
  • Three of a kind: better-than-expected earnings; play through.
  • Straight: Mention of better-than-expected earnings on CNBC; put more money on table.
  • Flush: Mention of better-than-expected earnings by Maria Bartiromo; lever.
  • Full house: Mention of better-than-expected earnings and a Merrill upgrade by Maria Bartiromo; double down.
  • Four of a kind: Stock split. Take money from mother for trading.
  • Straight flush: Stock split mentioned by Maria Bartiromo. Take money from child for trading.
  • Royal flush: Stock split of Net stock mentioned by Maria Bartiromo and then highlighted next day with interview on CNBC. Smash piggy banks, break into wife's safety deposit box, bet farm.
  • Five of a kind: (Wild card) stock split of heavily shorted Net stock with no earnings and not borrowable, mentioned by Maria Bartiromo and then highlighted throughout the day and the next day; embezzle to bet and return money next day without anyone knowing.

I don't know; could be a ruse. But whatever works, I guess!!

(The previous is fantasy, just in case you think that I might not be kidding.)

James J. Cramer is manager of a hedge fund and co-founder of 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 an email to