Silent But Deadly Demise

Even though nothing bad happened, RoweCom's stock has plummeted. Cramer wants to offer his condolences.
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Five months ago, a very well-meaning manager from

RoweCom

(ROWE)

visited our offices to talk about a deal they were making with

NewsEDGE

(NEWZ)

. Seemed like good guys. Stock was in the 40s. Looked solid.

Rowe was one of those Net companies that came public in that frenzy -- that "Let 100 Flowers Bloom" period at the beginning of 1999 when anything was allowed to come public provided it had a com on the end of it.

Like a lot of Net companies, this company did something online that wasn't yet online -- online magazines for libraries of the trade variety.

Seemed like a neat idea.

Anyway, not long after, the deal fell apart. Not clear why. Next thing I know, I hit up the stock and it is at 3. Yes, 40 to 3.

And nothing bad happened. In fact when I hit up

First Call

I see only number bumps! RoweCom is apparently delivering on its promises! They have nothing but cheerleaders writing about them. All the way down. I don't know where Rowecom stops. I didn't think

Baan

(BAANF)

would ever get to where it is, so who am I to say that RoweCom should hold at 3?

I point it out simply because, as the boys in my daughter's third grade class like to say, this one, like many others in its cohort, has been "silent but deadly."

Condolences to the good folk at RoweCom and their shareholders.

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

jjcletters@thestreet.com.