So Matt Jacobs bumps into Geena Davis at the Bear Stearns conference, and Jeff Berkowitz had a cup of joe with Phil Jackson at the CIBC conference, and let me tell you what Geena and Phil are buying...
OK, I know these commercials are tongue-in-cheek. I know that they are meant to be cute and to show you how easy trading can be. But the desire to "trade" as illustrated by Geena's willingness to fire an arrow at an apple to buy -- what,
at 68? -- smacks of being too glib in the time of stock-market cholera.
The ease of trade these days should almost be discouraged, not encouraged, given that the trendless market keeps slaying those who pick individual stocks based on a zeal to buy.
The industry knows this. Reading through the excellent Bill Ford
this weekend, I was struck at how horrid this slowdown must be for those who encouraged trading for the fun of it. The one word that never appears in my email from you folks these days is "fun." Heck, unless taking 10 cuts from a fungo bat to your head each day is fun, I don't think you can really be enjoying yourself in this tape.
Industry folks, it is time to encourage homework, encourage conviction and discourage snap judgments before we trade. This weekend I was talking with my wife, the
, about whether it was time for people to stop trading because the Net made it too easy. Not at all, she said. "It's just time to emphasize the need to use the Net to do more work on stocks before you buy them, so that if they go down you buy more rather than sell them."
Somehow, I don't see Phil or Geena buying more of what they pounced on so impetuously in those ads we keep watching.
James J. Cramer is manager of a hedge fund and co-founder of TheStreet.com. At time of publication, his fund had no positions in any stocks mentioned. 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