Tag Archives: Jim Cramer
Louis Victor is wondering about the effects on business journalists in response to the reporters who were subpoenaed by the SEC because he says they incorporate their opinions into what they write or state about companies.
Victor writes: “If this weighs down the stock then who is to blame then, Overtstock.com or the financial reporters that found issues with their earnings?
“Jim Cramer, Herb Greenberg and Carol S. Remond should come out fine from this but what does this mean for financial reporting, are financial journalist going to be restricted from giving their opinions or insights that are an asset to the investment community?
“Let’s hope not because the insight that is given from journalist have exposed some of the biggest scandals in the financial industry history, like Enron, Worldcom and Health South.
“So we will see how this develops in the coming weeks.”
Read Victor’s post on the NAMCE wire here.
Mad Money host Jim Cramer disclosed Monday night that he received a subpoena from the SEC in relation to its investigation into a hedge fund. Online financial news site TheStreet.com, which Cramer helped found in the 1990s, also received a subpoena, according to an article on the Web site.
The article noted: “Cramer, meanwhile, disclosed the subpoena on his “Mad Money” television show on CNBC Monday night. Through its general counsel, Jordan Goldstein, TheStreet.com disclosed that it, too, received an SEC subpoena. A spokesman for CNBC said the network did not receive a subpoena.
“Goldstein said TheStreet.com won’t comply with parts of the subpoena that demand communications between journalists and sources.”
Dow Jones, whose two journalists received a reply last week, has already said that it would not comply with the subpoenas. The SEC is also backing down from the subpoenas.
The New York Times’ Joe Nocera wrote a column this weekend about the efforts of Overstock.com CEO Patrick Byrne to discredit financial journalists who write negatively about his company or who question the “naked short-selling conspirary” that he has espoused for the past year. Nocera’s column is part of Times Select, so I haven’t posted about it until now since it is appearing in other newspapers and can be read for free.
Some background: Earlier this year, Byrne responded to interview questions from BusinessWeek’s Timothy Mullaney and the New York Post’s Roddy Boyd by posting his answers on an Internet site. Byrne took this tactic to circumvent what he thought were going to be negative storis written by journalists being fed a story line by short sellers. In fact, Byrne has sued the alleged short-selling firm.
Then comes this week, and one of the business journalists — the Marketwatch’s Herb Greenberg — is subpoenaed by the SEC, along with Dow Jones reporter Carol Remond, looking into Byrne’s allegations against the short sellers. According to Nocera’s column, Byrne has knowledge of the subpoenas and sends some strange — and menacing — e-mails to Greenberg. One of them read: “”As I take a sip, ‘I find myself curious: do you guys know? Are you sitting somewhere, blithely oblivious, still chuckling about Whacky Patty, and all that? Or do you understand now that this is going to end badly for you?”
Nocera’s analysis: “This is what Bryne does: along with O’Brien, he bullies and taunts and goads the small handful of reporters who dare to write about Overstock, making it clear that there will be a price to be paid for tackling the company or its chief executive. And as a result, financial reporters have become very chary of taking him on.”
I am sorry to say that I missed Byrne’s appearance earlier today on CNBC’s Kudlow & Co. But apparently he called Greenberg, one of the most respected business journalists in the field, a “crooked reporter.” That’s at least what former BusinessWeek reporter Gary Weiss, an acquaintance of Greenberg’s is stating on his blog.
Greenberg replied on Jim Cramer’s Mad Money show, saying that Byrne had libeled and slandered him. “I’m proud of what I do,” said Greenberg. “The SEC and I, we’re kind of doing the same thing. What I do for a living is help people avoid getting taken advantage of.” At the end of the segment, Cramer said to him: “Listen buddy, you’re not corrupt.”
I don’t expect this to be the last we’ve heard of this.
When Byrne posted his interviews on the Internet, I took it as a case of the changing relationship between business journalists and sources with the Web coming into play. But to go onto cable television and call a journalist “crooked” smacks of vindictiveness and a thin skin. I can see now why a lot of people think that Byrne is strange.
The cable network announced in a press release this morning that the well-liked Ron Insana will stop being an anchor and instead become a “senior analyst” at the business channel.
The release states, “Insana will offer daily commentary on the biggest economic and business news stories. He will appear on the network’s signature morning broadcast, ‘Squawk Box,’ once a month as well as on other CNBC programs.”
Apparently the move is part of Insana’s other ventures. The release notes that Insana is planning to start his own business and a subscription-based financial newsletter. Both will operate independently of CNBC.
Still, the move is just another in a series of shakeups at CNBC as it anticipates the competition from the upcoming Fox business channel scheduled to start operations later this year. The release did not state who would replace Insana on the ‘Street Signs’ program on CNBC.
The TVNewser blog had this to say about the move: “Insana’s departure from Street Signs ‘is the beginning of the ‘Squawk Box-ification’ of CNBC,’ an insider tells TVNewser.
“‘You’ll see more ensemble shows dayside and more CNBC in-house experts like David Faber and Insana and Dylan Ratigan and Joe Kernen and Jim Cramer and newcomer Erin Burnett all over the air at all times,’ the insider adds.
“So we’ll see more ‘pretty faces’ reading the stock prices, while experts explain what the stock prices mean? (Don’t get me wrong — Faber and Kernen and Cramer have pretty faces, too…)”
TheStreet.com, the online business news service, has reported its first profitable year since its inception a decade ago when Jim Cramer and others helped found it.
According to this report on NewYorkbusiness.com, “TheStreet.com earned $246,000, or 1 cent per share, for the year ended Dec. 31, compared with a loss of $2. 2 million, or 9 cents a share, in 2004. Revenue rose 10%, to $33.7 million.
“Its latest annual results were helped by strong profits from its electronic publishing business, which earned $5.8 million, along with the shutdown of its securities research and brokerage business in June. Excluding discontinued operations, the company earned $5.8 million, or 22 cents per share, up from $3.6 million, or 14 cents per share, a year earlier.”
Read the entire report, which includes an item about the CFO leaving, here.
The online business news site announced today that Mad Money host Jim Cramer, who helped found the site, and CEO Tom Clarke, plan to exercise options to purchase stock in the company and sell those shares. Cramer will give his shares to a foundation.
The web site states, “In addition, Cramer intends to donate 100,000 shares of TheStreet.com stock to the James J. and Karen L. Cramer Family Foundation, Inc., which in turn plans to donate the proceeds from the sale of the shares to The Connection For Women and Families, a charitable organization in Summit, N.J. Cramer owns, directly or indirectly, an additional 3,748,451 shares.”
Cramer has options to purchase another 540,000 shares.
In case you were wondering, the stock is around $8/share, a far cry from its post-IPO days, when it was above $60 a share, but still better than the value of less than $2 that it fell to in 2001.
David Carr, writing in this morning’s New York Times, takes up the subject of Mad Money host Jim Cramer, who has also been profiled in recent weeks by the Philadelphia Inquirer and Dallas Morning News.
Carr writes, “At a time when people will not pick up finance magazines with a set of tongs and too much of business is a dark, indictment-filled narrative, Mr. Cramer is mining a rich vein of the American psyche, a need to know that there are ways to get ahead. As the News Corporation contemplates starting its own financial channel this year, Time Warner pushes a megasite called CNN/Money and CondÃ© Nast develops a business magazine to come out in 2007, Mr. Cramer’s appeal is worth considering. These businesses, along with the rest of the business press, seem to be waiting for the return of the bull market. Does Mr. Cramer’s success mean that there are better days to come?”
Cramer, for those of you breathlessly waiting for the answer to that question, says no. Read more here.
Mad Money host Jim Cramer was profiled by the Dallas Morning News this morning.
The article notes: “Although he makes money for people, he is not without detractors. A former employee, Nicholas Maier, wrote a book that criticized Mr. Cramer for pumping up stocks by feeding rumors to CNBC’s Maria Bartiromo. He has denied those allegations.
“He has also been criticized for being too bullish, too bearish or too hot-tempered. To avoid at least some of this criticism, his only stock holding is in TheStreet.com.
“Some of the stocks he mentions on the show are held in Mr. Cramer’s Action Alerts Plus personal portfolio, but these holdings are held by a trust, and any profits go to charity.”
Read the article here.
And it was noticed by The Stalwart, a blog about business, the economy and markets. This blog is edited by a small money manager in the Northeast, but it often has some telling commentary about how stocks and businsses are covered in the wonderful world of business media.
Today’s post stated, “As much as we could joke about the utter irrelevancy of TheStreet.com, you have to be impressed, sometimes, with their introspectiveness. Though perhaps, it’s nothing more than the lucidness associated with a man on his deathbed. Today, they allowed Barry Ritholtz to write about ‘Mad Money’ Madness–the fact that so many are willing to speculate, in knee-jerk manner, on whatever utterances come from Jim Cramer’s mouth. Other than the way Cramer’s fans can move a stock, there’s also a thriving market, it seems in Mad Money paraphernalia, including (the utterly disturbing) Jim Cramer bobble-head figures..”
To read Ritholtz’s article, go here. Apparently talking Jim Cramer bobble head dolls are going for $100 on E-Bay.
Just one question: How much extra would I have to pay to get one that DIDN’T talk?
Mad Money host Jim Cramer, probably the most ubiquitous person in business journalism these days, is moving his one-hour radio show to CBS Radio from WOR Radio Network, according to this article from Billboard Radio Monitor.
The article states, “Beginning Feb. 14, Jim Cramerâ€™s â€œReal Moneyâ€? will broadcast live from 1 to 2 p.m. ET on eight CBS stations, clearing five of the top 10 markets, including WFNY-FM (formerly WXRK) New York, KNX-AM Los Angeles, WCKG-FM Chicago, KIKK-AM Houston, WKRK-FM Detroit, WHFS-FM Baltimore, KDKA-AM Pittsburgh, and KCMD-AM Portland, Ore.
“As part of the deal, Westwood One will distribute the program to all non-CBS stations.”
This is why I don’t listen to talk radio.