The great Mary Peretz writes:
I’ve known Jim for more than 30 years. We’ve had spats two times. He was responsible once. I, the other. I’ve done business with him and made money with him. And we started The Street.com together. He is a trusted and loving friend.
He is now being battered in the press. Mostly by people whose careers are built on ridiculing others. I happened to have watched the “Mad Money” show in which he spoke about Bear Stearns. He did not not not not say that you needn’t worry if you had stock in Bear Stearns. He said you need not worry if you had a brokerage account with Bear Stearns. That was true… and still is true. But we all utter silly enough words in the ordinary course of life that we don’t have to invent them, and Jim has his share of them. I do, too.
It’s not clear what he means by “brokerage account.” Bear effectively had no retail arm. It had an asset management arm, but that likely excluded investors with under 500K (or possibly much more) in the manner of a hedge fund. How likely is it that a high roller was writing into Cramer for advice?
Moreover, during Cramer’s speech, they showed a large graphic of Bear Stearns’ stock price.
Finally, the explanation that the viewer’s mention of “liquidity” indicates a fear of losing money in a brokerage account is simply not plausible. Bear’s problems were reported to have to do with liquidity and that is almost certainly what the viewer was referring to.
Now, I know next-to-nothing about finance. But I conferred with a senior exec of a large hedge fund about this. Peretz’s claims are not believable.
Marty Pertez has been allowed to rant and rave at the New Republic for nearly 35 years. His views on the Middle East are extreme, but anyone who criticizes them is an anti-Semite.
What’s his excuse for his flimsy defense of Jim Cramer? The saddest thing to me is how loath the “illustrious” New Republic alum — Ryan Lizza, Mike Kinsley, Rick Hertzberg, etc. — are to criticize him. The New Republic deserves to disappear.