Cratering Dow Sinks Cramer Cred (but Doubles Ratings)

'It’s just a bear trying to do a show in this environment,' Mad Money host says
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 20, 2008 9:14 AM CDT
Jim Cramer, host of CNBC's "Mad Money," has been widely panned for some big market missteps, including pronouncing Bear Stearns healthy not long before it went belly-up.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Jim Cramer was long Wall Street’s most reliable cheerleader, psyching up investors on his high-octane CNBC show. He’s insisted several times this year that the worst was over—only to tell viewers this month to forsake stocks entirely. “It is harder to get it right than any time I have seen in my career,” he tells New York Times media columnist David Carr.

Cramer has come in for a drubbing from viewers and competitors, who say Mad Money contributed to an overheated market; Fox Business Channel even took out an anti-Cramer ad on CNBC. The stock maven insists “the hated is the flip side of being liked,” and his toy-strewn desk still has more bulls than bears. He's also got twice as many viewers since Sept. 15, the day Lehman Brothers went under.