In Defense of Jim Cramer on Bear Stearns

Includes: BSC, JPM
by: Mick Weinstein

Jim Cramer has come under criticism in the past few days for his position on Bear Stearns before the big collapse. The criticism is unjustified - at least with regard to Cramer's remarks last week. On 'Mad Money', Tuesday March 11, Cramer was asked a question from a viewer who had a brokerage account at Bear - here's how he responded (you can stop it after the first 30 seconds):

Now, it's possible to construe the question as 'Should I take my money out of Bear Stearns stock?' (I did at first, given that Cramer usually addresses stocks), but I don't think that was actually the question - or Cramer's intended answer. Cramer was allaying concerns about the safety of keeping your account at Bear, as a depository. And he was right - there was no need to panic on that (just on the BSC equity). He was of course off-base in saying more generally 'Bear Stearns is not in trouble,' but with regard to the brokerage accounts held there, that was essentially true as well.

Yesterday on CNBC, Cramer explained his position. The editor of this YouTube video obviously does not understand the distinction that Cramer was making between Bear brokerage and BSC equity. But the oft-criticized Cramer was absolutely right in this case:

But if you're interested in what Cramer has actually said about BSC stock, we have a record of that right here.

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