The underperforming mutual funds are at it again! It's the last day of the month and they're going nuts moving their stocks up so they can look better in the statement they mail investors next week. (To refresh, these loser funds buy more of their largest positions to move them up and "mark them" at the highs for the session to overinflate their net asset values. It's a shameless game.)
You know this stuff happens. You know they get to work moving stocks aggressively at the end of every month to avoid double-digit losses. That these funds still play these games is pathetic. So many funds are down 20% to 30% this year, they must figure they have no choice. But they are only hurting you, the investor. Take advantage of these shenanigans and, after you've read this, pull out one-half of your money from these down-20%-or-more losers right now and place it with funds that care about your dollars. You'll get out at a higher net asset value than you would otherwise, because their marking-up moves up the whole value of the fund.
Many of these funds will be down for the year because their stocks aren't coming back any time soon. Some of them have now given up your magnificent 1999 gains. Don't be fooled; eject and run. Now. Then, if they mark them up again tomorrow, pull the other half out. You can do much better in an
index fund from here and, if you want managed funds, I defer to our resident fund genius, Ian McDonald, who writes more and better about mutual funds than anyone else in the country.
I'm going to hound this theme home on my radio
show today, because it is that important.
James J. Cramer is a director and co-founder of TheStreet.com. He contributes daily market commentary for TheStreet.com's sites and serves as an adviser to the company's CEO. Outside contributing columnists for TheStreet.com and RealMoney.com, including Cramer, may, from time to time, write about stocks in which they have a position. In such cases, appropriate disclosure is made. While he cannot provide personalized investment advice or recommendations, he invites you to send comments on his column to