Why the Older Pros Scorn This Market

It rewards sloth, indolence, glitz and public relations and punishes history, logic and rigor.
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Don't buy IBM (IBM) - Get Report from me today. Please. Don't pay up because you have heard that it is going to offer its personal computers on the Web. Don't take me out of my stock up 2 points because of .com lunacy. Don't be tempted to buy the stock because it might be at 190 because of this Web announcement.

Yeah, that's how ridiculous this world has become. I, a seasoned trader, will flip my IBM if the stock goes up because of this announcement. I will do that because I have been taught to sell the news, and this announcement is quintessential "news" -- with all of its most innocuous, preplanned, well-known connotations.

And you want to know what the irony will be? I will probably be wrong.

The stock will probably keep going up because online people buy news, not sell it. And they make themselves right.

On Fridays, sometimes, I can't help myself: I have to show some of the contempt that I feel for what I am doing. I am putting together lists of prospective stock-split candidates. I am buying stocks up 16 points in a day and then watching them go up another 10 points. I am buying stocks at 38 that were at 9 last week. I am buying stocks that in other markets I would be shorting in a heartbeat.

And I am making money.

Not one of these moves should make me money. They should all be losers.

This stuff is not even child's play. It is just plain stupid. It makes no sense. You get off the desk with other professionals and all you do is scratch your head and laugh and marvel and how *$#* dumb this market is and how it rewards sloth, indolence, glitz and public relations and punishes history, logic and rigor. Understand the raw anger and befuddlement that older pros have for this market. It is doing nothing it has ever done before.

Sometimes it gets to you.

James J. Cramer is manager of a hedge fund and co-founder of TheStreet.com. At time of publication, his fund was long IBM, although positions can 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

letters@thestreet.com.