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No Time for Homework

In this market, taking the time to do your homework can cost you a trade.

Painful how much homework can cost you. We were just on the cusp of buying some

Vitria Technology


when it was being wrecked in the morning. The thing was down about 15 and we were itching to pull the trigger. We love the stock. Heck,

Matt "Just Call Me Vitria" Jacobs

was positively salivating over the opportunity.

But then homework knocked. Matt thought he ought to go hear the company at the

Robbie Stephens

technology conference. He wanted to kick the tires one more time before we bought the weakness. Boom, the buyers hijacked the car right from the showroom! By the time Matt got out of the meeting, the stock was up 20 points! Pathetic, but these stocks are becoming Aesop's stocks: He who hesitates is lost.

Random musings

: Letting some

TheStreet Recommends

American Express

(AXP) - Get American Express Company Report

go up 7 (from this morning's Dow

round-up). Still no word from the good people at

Business Week

about whether they will run my letter to the editor

in response to the article that had me short



and bashing it. Those off-line guys must not really look at their email after all.

James J. Cramer is manager of a hedge fund and co-founder of At time of publication, his fund was long American Express. 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