Booyah on the Bayou: Cramer brings "Mad Money" to Freeman
“Mad Money” host Jim Cramer is famous for his unabashedly bullish take on the stock market, so it was only fitting that the investment guru should bring his CNBC television show to a city like New Orleans and a school like Freeman.
“The reason we’re down here at Tulane’s terrific Freeman School of Business is because this place is suffused with optimism!” Cramer announced to thunderous applause from the more than 700 fans packed into Dixon Hall. “On Bourbon Street, the glass or bottle—or go cup—always looks three quarters full, perhaps because the people here know what a lot of water looks like.”
On Tuesday (Oct. 19), Cramer hosted “Mad Money” in front of a live audience at Tulane as part of the show’s “Back to School Tour.” Since 2006, “Mad Money” has visited more than a dozen universities, including Harvard, Columbia, University of Southern California, Georgetown and University of Texas at Austin, but this was the show’s first visit to the Big Easy, which Cramer said occupies a special place in“Mad Money” lore: His signature catchphrase— “Booyah!”—originated with a caller to Cramer’s show from New Orleans.
On the day of Cramer’s appearance at Tulane, the Dow dropped 165 points, but true to form, Cramer said the loss was nothing but a minor pullback.
“Today’s selloff was not about the facts; the facts were actually pretty darn good,” he said. “It was only the headlines that were bad and they provided a nice excuse for profit taking after a massive rally.”
Beginning with Cramer's entrance—accompanied by the Green Wave mascot, pompom-waving cheerleaders and the Tulane band playing “When the Saints Go Marching In”—the show had a decidedly local flavor. Early in the broadcast, Cramer interviewed Jim Bernhard, chairman and CEO of the Baton Rouge-based Shaw Group, who made a point of thanking Burkenroad Reports for choosing Shaw as the very first company to cover when the program was founded. Later in the show, Cramer highlighted CenturyLink, a Monroe, La., company that has quietly become the nation’s largest rural telephone company.
While the audience included a few faculty, alumni and guests, the vast majority of the loud, "booyah"-shouting crowd were students. Manish Mishra (BSM ’12) got the chance to ask Cramer about Ray Ozzie’s recent resignation from Microsoft (Cramer thought it was good news for Apple), while Mike Jones (MFIN ’11) asked which stocks would benefit the most from the Haynesville and Marcellus shale developments (Cramer’s pick was Chesapeake Energy). In the Lightning Round, students got Cramer’s rapid-fire take on stocks including Hershey, Citigroup, Weatherford, Intuitive Surgical, Kimco Realty and Petrobras.
The biggest Freeman School spotlight of the evening was for Burkenroad Reports, which Cramer praised for regularly outperforming the big guys. Toward the end of the show, Cramer invited four Burkenroad analysts onto the stage to pitch their stocks to him. Liam Kelly (MBA ’11) pitched McMoran Exploration, which he defended as a great long-term value despite Cramer’s worries over weak Q3 production numbers. Craig Kolwicz (BSM ’11) pitched Cyberonics, whose “depression box” device—which the company is currently seeking approval for—Cramer called a home run.
Between segments, Cramer joked with the crowd and offered some candid, behind-the-scenes insights about his on-the-air analysis.
“You business school guys will recognize that I'm doing present value analysis and I'm also doing compound interest,” Cramer explained, “but you can't say that because then people will just turn the channel to CNN or something.”
To see the full “Mad Money” at Tulane show online, visit CNBC.com.