Today's action seems like a typical shakeout maneuver. We have seen a million of them. The selling has been so vicious and the negativity so great that it seemed like everyone was keying off of Microsoft's (MSFT) - Get Report initial selloff instead of focusing on the strength away from that stock.
Nobody believes in much here, and we can't engineer a real turnaround yet. We have to get even more negative before that happens. For us, we made our bets yesterday during the weakness. We can't come in now and do anything except buy weakness (like
) on a wide scale. We are doing virtually nothing.
Again, we don't think anything fundamental has changed this week, except that people got negative (hence moves like
), but not negative enough. My mail has run so overwhelmingly negative about the market, yet all that has happened is that we are over the hump of a
Big Bad Event (
) and we have seen some good and some not-so-good earnings. (Some of these newbies are urging me to sell everything and head for the hills. What am I going to do once I get to the hills? Buy them back?)
Forgive me for being too simplistic, but other than a downbeat call from
, I haven't been on any really negative conference calls (more on that this weekend). And except for Greenspan talking about being vigilant, I didn't hear anything negative there either.
Consequently, if the bond futures were up, I think this market would be trading flat to up. Instead, the bond futures are trading off, and that is leading the market down. I can't love the market when the bond futures have such a heavy downward bias. But I can like individual stocks. And I still have plenty of cash that is hardly burning a hole in my pocket.
James J. Cramer is manager of a hedge fund and co-founder of TheStreet.com. At time of publication, his fund was long Microsoft, IBM 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