This blog post originally appeared on RealMoney Silver on Feb. 9 at 7:55 a.m. EST.In the past, I have come to the defense of Jim Cramer against a host of media attacks. I do this not because I write for TheStreet.com -- I view myself as an independent person who speaks his mind regardless of the consequences -- rather I have defended Jim because I strongly believe that he provides a value-added contribution to the individual investor in navigating an increasingly difficult investment terrain. Jim does this not only on CNBC's "Mad Money" but, importantly, in the publication of his books, Jim Cramer's Mad Money: Watch TV, Get Rich, Jim Cramer's Stay Mad for Life: Get Rich, Stay Rich (Make Your Kids Even Richer) and Jim Cramer's Real Money: Sane Investing in an Insane World, which provide more pensive analytical tools and recommendations in approaching one's investment portfolio. Bullish media and Wall Street analyst hype are legendary and, to some degree, represent the proximate cause for many investment miscues on the part of individual investors whom have historically behaved in a Pavlovian fashion in their reaction to perma-bullish Pablum, so, when someone like Jim Cramer provides a more thorough and objective educational outline to navigating the market, it should be welcomed by the media, not criticized. Over the weekend, Barron's published the story, "Cramer's Star Outshines His Stock Picks." The thrust of the article is that "Jim Cramer's celebrity is bigger than ever" but the "stock picks featured on 'Mad Money' don't live up to the host's hype." The Barron's article is critical of his opinions on an enormous number of stocks and suggests that "in the days leading up to their mention on 'Mad Money,' stocks start to move in the direction of his recommendation. Post-mention, they revert to their previous trend, short-changing investors." The piece goes on to suggest that Jim's staff is "heavy-footed in their research" and the subject matter of many shows appear to be leaked because of that process.
- He goes belly-to-belly with company managements on "Mad Money." He typically doesn't serve up the easy pitch but rather usually goes to the root of the valuation/fundamental controversy.
- His lightning rounds give his quick and abridged impression of a stock's outlook.
- He develops investment themes and strategies that are easily understood and developed reasonably well on "Mad Money" and in his books.
- Most important, on "Mad Money" he provides an educational handbook on how to analyze a company/sector, with a focus on the development of the principal determinants of future stock market behavior.
Know What You Own: Doug Kass mentions Jim Cramer's stock picks, and some of the top-performing stocks in Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS portfolio include Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY), Abbott Laboratories (ABT), Gilead Sciences (GILD), BP (BP), iShares FTSE/Xinhua China 25 Index (FXI), ConocoPhillips (COP) and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ). For more on the value of knowing what you own, visit TheStreet.com's Investing A-to-Z section.