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Relying on the Charts

At times like this, Cramer finds solace in The Chartist.
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For about the 15 billionth time in the past 10 years, I find myself in near total agreement with Helene Meisler. I like the cyclicals and think they can be bought; I hate the stuff she hates. I am selling the stuff she says should be sold, in the rare intersection where I am long and she recommends the boot.

When my wife and I used to trade together, we always found Helene's work to be a great mediator when the Trading Goddess and I disagreed.

Let's say I thought


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should be kept, and she hated Coke. Helene's work would then be the accepted arbiter.

Ten years later and the wife is home with the kids and Helene is in Singapore -- out of touch except for this site. And her work continues to confirm our fears.

I think one of the reasons why that may be is that when things are in flux and you can't get conviction, you fall back on the charts and their wise interpreters. When the bonds are your enemy, even when the fundamentals in the stock market seem steady, you can't have surety. But you can have Meisler. That's about the best thing you are going to get in a time like this.

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