You want a potent combination? Mix one part blowout
tech conference, one part billions upon billions of retirement money and one part worldwide optimism, and you have an explosive recipe for upside. Now, stir in a massive amount of skepticism about the Net, a pinch of short-selling and an underinvested public, courtesy of the late summer selloff, and you have spontaneous combustion that could take us to 10,000 in a blink of the eye. Microwaved, microwaved.
About a year ago, an editor of a major financial magazine was telling me how everybody was sick of the bull, that the notion of the never-ending bull market had worn out its welcome. To which I say, spoken truly like someone who has never bought a stock.
For me, this market is the 1998
, the Cunningham-led
(remember them?) all wrapped up in one. I can't emphasize to you enough about how strong and, frankly, special this market is. Once again, coming into the year I heard all of the usual garbage that is meant to keep us in our savings-account chains (Can't stop that stuff, having taken more courses about
-- and those were REQUIRED): earnings woes, interest rates and a
that was no longer accommodative.
all blew up, and we were told that so goes those soft goods guys, so goes the market.
Maybe in 1988 that was true and possibly in 1992-95. But this is a market that is much more than just the stuff that is in the fridge or on the side of the sink. This is a market that is driven by some powerful themes, all of which are doing well, (Net, PCs) coupled with a lack of investment alternatives. You hear all about this supply of Treasuries and corporates? Nonsense. The government is retiring debt, not issuing it. The corporations could issue 10 times the amount they are issuing, and I still don't think that the supply would drive rates up to levels competitive with the stock market. And, don't forget, those short rates aren't as attractive as they once were -- something about that magic below-5% number -- so you have less competition from the short end, too.
Most important, what I am trying to suffuse my writing with is the sheer wonder of the move. As much as it happens, as much as it is repetitive, when I am long, I WILL NEVER GET SICK OF THE BULL.
I like the Dan and Phil e-commerce ad by
as well as the "who called this meeting?" piece. Most of the ads I hear all day behind me on the TV make me sick (especially that stupid car-service ad and the Brit in the suit who looks like he is walking on Fire Island), so I thank IBM for at least trying to make ads interesting. Don't these dumb advertisers know that we listen all day and we get sick of the same ad -- to the point where we will go out of our way to avoid the product? When I had something to do with the ads at
, I used to rant that I had seen them too often and that they were making me nauseous. But I am sure that none of the ad guys behind the crummy ads ever watch through one cycle, let alone a whole day's worth.
James J. Cramer is manager of a hedge fund and co-chairman of TheStreet.com. At the time of publication, his fund was long IBM, though positions 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 by sending a letter to TheStreet.com at