Jim Cramer has noticed over the years that big-name hedge fund managers tend not to comment on, or recommend, high-quality stocks to the average investor.
"I bet most of the people who run big hedge funds likely wouldn't be caught dead owning any of those great stocks. If anything, they'd want to short them," the "Mad Money" host observed.
From the countless investor letters, stories, and interviews Cramer has seen, he knows very well that no savvy hedge fund titan would dare come out and say he owned a great deal of stock.
"The most you'll get out of them is that they aren't all that short…. or at least not yet," he said.
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Call it bearishness, or just protecting their positions, but that rhetoric drives Cramer crazy. That is because many of the big fund managers that speak out publicly made their millions (or billions) in a different time, shorting the market in the 1980s, the 1990s or the 2000s.
"They made it in a couple of big trades at a time that's not that relevant to this moment and at an age where they took big risks," which makes it easy for them to now knock the market for being too expensive, Cramer said.
The hedge fund gurus of today arguably do not need to buy anything at all to maintain their stature. They have already amassed incredible wealth, and buying really only puts them at risk of losing,
"Take a billionaire who made his moeny shorting the stock market in several discrete moments or going long in others," Cramer said. "Right now, that billionaire's programmed response is '1. The market's really very high, 2. It's very overvalued and 3. It can keep going higher, but not with my money.'"
The win-win position makes sense for those who have already made the money, but has few and possibly negative implications for the average investor, Cramer argued.
Yet even though he watches market movements with a hawk's eye for ideas on which stocks to cover and recommend, Cramer said he cannot blame the titans that stay quiet.
"As long as they don't take a stand, they can't really lose, right? The only way they can tarnish their reputations at this point is by getting something wrong, telling you to buy something, so they do nothing," he said. "Believe me, I get it — you only need to get rich once — but regular investors really shouldn't be taking their cue from these uber-wealthy hedge fund guys who just don't want to get in trouble."
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