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(Thanks to Christine Mohan for pointing out to me, this excellent article can be read free this week on Barron's. URL is

Barrons writes that Jim Cramer's Mad Money Picks have underperformed the benchmarks, and investors are better off betting against Cramer.

Some interesting Quotes.

"When we asked Cramer and CNBC for their own records of Mad Money's stock-picking performance, they had more excuses than a Tour de France cyclist dodging a blood test. They complained that the list from contained some stocks from the program's "Lightning Round," in which Cramer gives a quick analysis and a buy or sell decision on stocks phoned in live by viewers. These, they argued, shouldn't count in our tally.
Then there's the day-after-pop phenomenon. Our analysis of Cramer's picks over the past two years, from, showed that, on average, the stocks jumped 2% the day after he mentioned them. From there, they usually moved sideways or down for the following 30 trading days (see chart). This offered an opportunity to make money -- 5% to 30% a year -- by selling Cramer's selections short.
In trying to figure that out, we came across, a Website started by Michael McGown, a retired securities analyst who worked for several major brokerage firms. McGown started the site not long after the show started, and says Cramer sent a complimentary e-mail after noticing it. McGown counts only Cramer's clear and unconditional Buy recommendations, following a sensible set of rules. McGown tracks the stock until Cramer says sell. "As a person watching the show," says McGown, "I think it's a fair way to rate him."

Over two years, YourMoneyWatch has tracked 1,300 Mad Money picks. It's this tally that shows Cramer's stocks lagging behind the Dow and the S&P 500. This year, Cramer's done better. McGown's data show his picks up 3.2%, while the S&P is up 2%; the Dow, 4.9%; and the Nasdaq, 3.7%. CNBC says the YourMoneyWatch data, as well that of Cramer's Mad Money Website, are "not authoritative."

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