What the heck is Jim doing talking about 10 things that could go right this year on a day when the Dow was down 4%, the S&P 500 was down 5% and the NASDAQ dropped 6%? Shouldn't we be talking about how terrible things are? Shouldn't we be dwelling on all the negatives?
No way. That doesn't make a lick of sense. Jim has been cautiously negative for months, telling people that they shouldn't have any money they need for the next five years in stocks because they're too risky. But Tuesday was the kind of day that makes you want to throw up your hands, pull out your hair, give up and just sell everything, and that's wrong.
It's easy to panic after a 332-point decline in the Dow, especially when the financials, which need to be healthy for any sustained rally, were totally obliterated, including the crushing of State Street and PNC Financial. And as Jim explained, the signals from the market Tuesday were very bearish. Beyond the banks, the oils like Exxon, Chevron and Marathon Oil, which we recommended, got kicked in the face, indicating that the market thinks the global economy is in worse shape than we thought. When that's what the market's saying, it's easy to see only the negatives and to forget that good things can happen.
So on day's like Tuesday, it's our job to remind you that good news is still possible, even if many of the potential positives Jim listed won't kick in until we get to the second half of the year. When everyone is this negative, you don't want to be blind to anything that's at all constructive.
We are not saying that the market is necessarily going to improve any time soon. Only that you have to open your eyes to the possibility that things could improve, especially now that we have an administration that's willing to acknowledge the scope of the problems we're facing. Optimism may not be the order of the day, but neither is thoughtless pessimism.
Cliff Mason is the Senior Writer of CNBC's Mad Money w/Jim Cramer, and has been that program's primary writer, in cooperation with and under the supervision of Jim Cramer, since he began at CNBC as an intern during the summer of 2005. Mason was the author of a column at TheStreet.com during 2007, which he describes as "hilarious, if short-lived." He graduated from Harvard College in 2007. It was at Harvard that Mason learned to multi-task, mastering the art of seeming to pay attention to professors while writing scripts for Mad Money. Mason has co-written two books with Jim Cramer: Jim Cramer's Mad Money: Watch TV, Get Richand Stay Mad For Life: Get Rich, Stay Rich (Make Your Kids Even Richer). He is 100% responsible for any parts of either book that you did not like.
Mason has also had a fruitful relationship with Jim Cramer as his nephew for the last 23 years and will hopefully continue to hold that position for many more as long as he doesn't do anything to get himself kicked out of the family.
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