Looking to a New Leader

Intel seems to be the market's field marshal, although its role makes for a narrower market than when the drugs or financials are in charge.
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When we lost the Net's leadership, (America Online (AOL) , Yahoo! (YHOO) ) on top of the loss of the drug leadership (Pfizer (PFE) - Get Report, Merck (MRK) - Get Report) and the financial leadership (Schwab (SCH) , E*Trade (EGRP) ), we seemed to be stuck out in the wilderness. We could not come to grips with the notion that we had no general to get behind. It caused a lot of confusion since the mid-July top.

Now the new leader has emerged --

yes, I am long it

--

Intel

(INTC) - Get Report

, and like in other great tapes where Intel has played field marshal for us, this one's got some pizzazz.

Don't get me wrong. I like markets led by the drugs and the financials because they can be broader. We do not have that kind of market.

But there is a beauty to Intel because it can energize a lot of sectors, as many that use Intel's chips. This sprint of Intel, by the way, comes after a mediocre quarter, one in which only the guidance was positive.

For me, I have to be long

Dell

(DELL) - Get Report

,

Hewlett-Packard

(HWP)

and

Microsoft

(MSFT) - Get Report

when Intel leads. They are simply too similar. I like being in personal-computer and computer-related stocks when Intel is top. I am writing a memo to my partner,

Jeff Berkowitz

, right now as he comes in to take over in my absence next week. It says, "

Don't sell the Intel.

"

Remind him if he forgets it.

Random musings:

What's the opposite of hanging someone in effigy? Whatever it is, I want to do it for

Herb Greenberg

for his triple play of

Stewart Enterprises

(STEI)

,

Family Golf

(FGCI)

and

Sabratek

(SBTK)

. Hit these stocks up. All three were red-flagged by Herb in timely fashion. Oh, that's too milquetoast. This guy has saved you a fortune. Again, when people ask me, "How can you charge for

TheStreet.com

?" I always say, "Read Herb and ask how we cannot charge." Recently I bought a house in New Jersey from a terrific gent. He asked me what he should do in the market. I told him to read Herb Greenberg. He recently called me. He had been buying puts on stuff that Herb wrote about. He wanted to tell me they paid for his subscription in spades. He no longer doubted how we could charge. He wanted to know why we didn't charge more. My sentiments exactly. ... Not to mention the real-time quotes. I can't believe how many people think we only have that delayed stuff. Pshaw. The delayed stuff is what the free guys give you. I have never made a lot of money off the 15-minute delayed quotes.

James J. Cramer is manager of a hedge fund and co-founder of TheStreet.com. At time of publication, his fund was long Intel, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft, Yahoo! and America Online. 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

jjcletters@thestreet.com.