Are Viewers Getting Tired Of Jim Cramer? (And Of CNBC)

Tyler Durden's picture

Forget April - for Jim "Mad Money" Cramer March may well have become the cruelest month. First, we broke the news that Cramer's TheStreet just became the object of an investigation by the SEC. What should be more troubling for the Mad Money Maestro is that the latest Mad Money Nielsen numbers just came in. And they stink: March was the weakest month for Jim Cramer's show in well over a year. After posting a slight improvement in February courtesy of the market's consternation with Greece, March was a collapse. Expect many more sound effects, props, gimmicks (luckily, no incremental cleavage is possible) shortly. Also expect much more pro-cyclical stock advice (buy if the stock market is going up, sell if vice versa), and more big picture proclamations that are refuted within 24 hours. Also expect many more ads for male incontinence products as the show has to resort to showing increasingly "distressed" advertising inventory.

Of course there is a much more benign explanation: people are just sick of CNBC in general. Below we present the GE business propaganda channel's last three years of viewership data.

Just like with Cramer, after a brief blip higher in February, CNBC captured just 58 of its target demographic audience (25-54): the lowest in over three years of data (once again according to Nielsen Media Research). Could it be, that just like 89% of readers believe Rick Santelli is more trustworthy than Steve Liesman, that the broader population is getting simply sick and tired of propaganda covered up with props such as loud moo noises, turtles, 3D charts, "victory for the bulls" soundbite and other hollow instruments designed to keep the audience's attention for just one extra minute even as the underlying content deteriorates progressively. Ultimately, the bottom line will most certainly decide. We are very curious if Comcast's deal with GE for CNBC et al has a sliding revenue/net income consideration scale.


Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
uno's picture

CNBS is run by the New York Stock Exchange.  It is pure PR campaign.  I do find the half time report decent to watch when I can.  That is 15 minutes from 12:45 - 1:00.

I use to mute most everyone but Rick.  Some of the women host are downright hideous looking.  Becky sucking up and down to Warren.  Useless TV, bloomberg has much better looking news reporters/anchors.  

I read Zerohedge, Jesse, Big Picture, Slope, Evil, Jim Sinclair and Gata.  Most of the mainstream stuff is spin and marketing.

Reflexivity's picture

  Most of the mainstream stuff is spin and marketing.

The question is:  Is it mainstream because of the spin and marketing or is it spin and marketing because it is mainstream?

Chicken-or-the-egg, you pick which came first.

Personally, I think CNBC was a good channel about 15 years ago (when it first started).  But with the dot com boom coupled with the ability for people to trade stocks on the Internet, everyone had to learn about the market.  Once the masses came to CNBC to get their daily stock tips fix, that's when it went down hill.

I remember when CNBC was a truly 'niche' media offering.  Needless to say, it's been diluted.

By the way, it would be interesting to see who the advertisers are on CNBC.  Last time I watched the channel, and I try not to, about 60% of the ads during daytime was daytrading materials. (the other 40% as tyler mentioned, is probably senior citizen pills for 'unmentionable' problems).

If you want to find out who CNBC caters to, then reverse engineer the demographics of the advertisers.

covered's picture

For a TV show whose motto is (or was, last time I watched, long ago) "Watch TV, make money"  I  suppose it makes a certain amount of sense that the ratings wane when the results fail. Sorta like the newest diet fad. I would add that there has been a steady erosion of cable TV watchers, in general, fleeing to the Internet, simply because many of the featured programs promote propaganda that insults the intelligence of the average IQ over 100. I have a friend who occasionally is interviewed on Kudlow's show that I don't even watch when he's on. He says, "they don't want my analysis, they just want me to tell them what to buy." Jesse Livermore said the same thing in a great book almost 100 years ago. Human nature is a pretty strange thing. People will pinch pennies in their entire lifestyle but turn right around and blow thousands off something they see on cnbc.

Pamela Anderson's picture

The worst of CNBC (in no particular order)

Mark Haines: I don't understand how this guy could be anchoring anything related with finances. This cow is a perfect example of everything that is wrong with America: lazy, stupid, ignorant, etc.

Sue Herera: Please, please... send this white hippopotamus to bake cookies. This mammal should be fired immediately.

Bob Pisani: He is the C3PO of CNBC.... just shut the f#!k up! Your "interpretations of the market" are completely useless.... you talk, look, think  and move like C3PO and for this reasons you should be terminated immediately.

Trish Regan: Trish "Bambi's brain" Regan.... is there any one more STUPID than her...  after having twins shows in colorful tight dresses, trying to prove that she is in great shape after the pregnancy... but then she covers all the time the left over gunt with the papers that she is using to read stupid information: Why are you using the tight dresses then???. You are going to be the next Sue Herera!

I have more for the rest of the CNBC "gang", but is going to be later.

The Merchant of Venice's picture

Trish Regan?  Here's why she's still on CNBC.

Philips Exeter?  Check.

Goldman Sachs?  Check.

DE Shaw?  Check.

Husband?  James A. Ben, a former Lehman Bros "investment banker".

CNBC still pays John Harwood for "reporting" at the same time he's short selling the marriage of a United States Senator.

Stupid Donkey's picture

Ratings go up when the market goes down. You would think that would encourage them to sell more fear rather than pump the markets all the time.

Sam Clemons's picture

That is what I noticed too.  Looks like viewership is a pretty good contra-indicator.

John Self's picture

It's a double-edged sword, though.  Selling fear spooks (or pisses off) mainstream advertisers, so they can't do much of that.  But losing viewers does the same....

nonclaim's picture

With headlines like these,who isn't fed up?

Charts: Dow Rally Could Hit 11,800, Buy Dips | March 30, 2010 | 07:54 AM EDT|headline|other|text|&par=yahoo

Cleanclog's picture

Never great, CNBC has become nauseatingly "all looks great for equities - ya gotta be investing, go go go" and so disingenuous.  

Clearly not wanting to educate or even accurately report anymore.  Just stimulate financial transactions, preferably stock purchases.  They are even making "happy" about the low volume (while becoming more and more nervous that investing activity of masses may diminish so as to make them irrelevant and soon without adequate viewership (and advertizers).

I am now watching Fox Business News as much as CNBC - something I would have considered impossible two years ago.  They allow discussion without yelling.  Conversation not just sound bites with big amazed eyes.

Belrev's picture

Specifically for CNBC, viewrship statistics have one big peculiarity. Many of TV units playing the CNBC programs are placed in the office buildings of financial institutions where nobody is really watching it. It is sort of like background noise. And when Cramer's show is on, most of the office employees are already on their way home. So the screens are playing to empty office space.

desk-jockey's picture

what do you mean are ppl "getting sick of" Cra-fuk-er?  Was sick of him before I ever even watched him.  COLOSSAL DOUCHE.


/DIAF, EABOD you f*cking TWAT, Cramer.  SHYSTER.

dumpster's picture

cramer,,, so much viewer ship by those who claim not to notice lol

the blinded crowd of watchers ..   as it is written,   does a falling tree make a sound in an earless forest,

dumpster turned off the FTV  years ago,  

why set in a pool of spit ,   


TheGoodDoctor's picture

Awwww. And here I was thinking his 5th year anniversary show must have broken records with the number of viewers. And with Jim all choked up and thanking everyone for the kudos. More like breaking his arm patting himself on the back! *rolls eyes*

Hephasteus's picture

Needs moar psychic bank stock pickers.

Edna R. Rider's picture

I couldn't care less about CNBC or Cramer.  It's been a long time since I've seen either.  I'm getting tired of the sham of a market and all the commentary.

buzzsaw99's picture

Advertisers aren't getting their money's worth out of CNBC because a large percentage of viewers have the sound turned off. Even so it is getting harder to watch. I prefer the stoic approach of my local television business report at 6 p.m..

Bigdaddydvo's picture

Excellent and very appropriate reference to Eliot's "The Waste Land" in the opening sentence TD. 

Gimp's picture

Pure propaganda, the investing public has grown-up over the past fifteen years and realized CNBS is just one big commercial - BUY, BUY, BUY as per investment bankers while they SELL, SELL, SELL. Game's up.

"It's the freakest of shows"  is their Life on Mars?



augmister's picture

Wonderful to see Jim Cramer die in the ratings.

As goes CNBC, so goes their #1 chimp.

Brokenarrow's picture

Cramer killed more people than Hitler, Bin Laden, and Stalin combined. He is a souless, abuser of the elderly and naive.


He cut his teeth on the trading desk of Michael Steinhardt, one of the most hated men on Wall St. Steinhardt invented the "story stock" game, which is another term for pump and dump.


I wish Cramer "Bozo the Clown" the very worst. Maybe he can get his old retail job back at GS ripping old ladies on a principal mark up from Gs' unwanted inventories??


Better yet, his pal, Eddie L., can give him a job at Sears selling vacums.

Reflexivity's picture

He is a souless, abuser of the elderly and naive.

You hit the nail on the head.  How is Cramer's show the slightest bit moral, legal or ethical.

We all know that the human mind will suspend rational, skeptical and slow-twitch judgement when the right emotional 'hot buttons' are pushed (pun intended).

And this is what his show is doing: playing on the human brain's weakness for sensational news and events.  There's no room for sensation in money management.  It should be a boring, dull, drab, no-nonsense, emotion-free business.  The personality of a good money manager is more like a mortician than a stand-up comedian.

I once heard Cramer state publicly (on CNBC) that he and his family flies coach on airplanes to teach his kids about humility.  I have a suggestion for Cramer:  It may be easier to instill 'family values' if you fly first class everyday of the week and twice on Sundays, just as long as you pull the shameful show off the air and quit pandering to the naive and financially desperate.




Budd Fox's picture

Cramer killed more people than Hitler, Bin Laden, and Stalin combined.

Agreed Cramer is a douche....but this a bit overboard!!!


colonial's picture

The fact that more people have not commented here is proof that CNBS is becoming less relevant by the day. 

I agree with those who have said it was decent ten years ago.  Back then at least there was some decent analysis on Squawk Box.  Now they have all these stupid blaring songs and movie cuts.  Its really an insult to the senses considering the time its on. 

I only watch for the ticker, (on mute,) which is surprising in that bloomberg used to have a better graphics feed but they dumbed down the scroll  package.  Occasionally CNBS will get a decent guest/interview and I'll actually listen but for the most part its a waste of time.  I don't think Fox is much better.  Increasingly its a Bloomberg world and they ought to get smarter, more aggressive, and really challenge their hollow competition. 

NGC 6888's picture

I would say that I'm waiting for it to degrade to sleaziness.  To boost ratings.  Maybe they come out with something truly juvenile and offensive like The Boom Boom Room program, but I haven't watched for more than 30 seconds in at least a year.

Fritz's picture

You just can't say enough bad things about CNBC to do it justice.

It is a total waste of cable channel airspace.

Almost without exception, every host personality at CNBC is a giant douchebag.

poor fella's picture

When Erin called Bush a "monkey", I had a little more respect for her ( And honestly, Mark isn't that bad, and Simon (the new Brit) is a pretty square-deal guy. I've seen him ask some hard-ball questions that get stutters in response.

Either way, the channel is complete propaganda, but I find it funny - especially Bob Pisani, that guy could talk up Martial Law or The Apocalypse - and the worst thing, if you listened to Piss-onme, you'd be WAAAY ahead of the game. The Fed (and GS by proxy) thought he'd be the best oracle for the sheeple?

Kudlow, Trish, Poindexter, that blond chic with the 'Joker' smile, Michelle CAbruwhatever, and for the most part Cram-mer - drive me NUTS.

When you only got Bloomberg and CNBS - it's a dirty pleasure - although just as often as not, an AMC movie suits me just fine ;).

Double down's picture

Please God not BNN!!  Watching them asking polite questions of Canada's five or so financial aristocrats and 30 or so recurring portfolio managers is like watching public masturbation.  It is sad.  At least the gene pool in the States is larger.  Canada's financial elite is way too inbred.



1fortheroad's picture

Hey,CNBS sucks bigtime, I should know as I watch it 16 hours a day.

Nikki's picture

They got me with the Google Sucker pump to $700 at Christmas time. average in at $610. No stop loss. Had to double down in the $520 range.. Sold before I got back to even.

Thanks for the cheap lesson. I dont watch CNBS anymore.

NASDAQ 5000 anyone ?? ... Maria ???

lsbumblebee's picture

It was inevitable. His core audience is getting older and they're moving on to more substantial fare like Suze Orman.

NGC 6888's picture

Hence the college tour.  A sucker is born...


They move on to Wheel of Fortune and Depends.

Spitzer's picture

Schiff was going to have his own segment on fast monkey twice a week but politics got in the way. Melissa Lee has baby arms.

jkruffin's picture

My most favorite Cramer video of all time,  shows just how much of a joke and moron he really is.  Too bad this didn't get the worldwide attention it deserved.  Just because it was done on a comedy show, it was all 100% fact and it showed the world just how ignorant CNBC really is.

nedwardkelly's picture

Hadn't seen that one, that's great.

"You should be buying these, and accept that they are overvalued, but accept that they are going to keep going higher. I know that sounds irresponsible but that's how you make the money."

What a joke.

brown_hornet's picture

More Julia Boorstyn...good even with the sound off

lsbumblebee's picture

I miss Margaret Brennan. Schlurppp!

Harbourcity's picture


I don't understand why people even watch that guy.


the grateful unemployed's picture

the only question i have is Karen Finerman (Fast Money) the trading goddess, the wife or ex-wife of Cramer he used to put on a pedestal.

Otrader's picture

That John Stewart clip is a classic!!!  I don't know how he keeps going on Mad Money after he was exposed to the world for the cheat that he is.  If I was Cramer, I would have admitted shame, apologize and stop lying to people.   Better yet, come up with another show and tell people how overvalued or $hitty a stock really is.

For that type of info, I actually would turn to CNBC.   

Augustus's picture

Damn CNBC and their Socialist Cheerleaders.  It is easy to watch and see when Liesman has been at a meeting with some Obama Administration officials and got his special free prostate massage.  Nonsense simply pours out uncontrollably.

The Cram job is more and more obvious everyday in his obsequiousness to the new plan for plundering America.  He is stupid enough to believe his is an insider.  The same policies that the elite has used to bankrupt NY City and NY State are so wonderful that we are going to bring them to all of the rest of you.  Hey Cram Man, profits plundered by the govt. leave none for the shareholders, the pension plans, or the insurance company reserve funds.

John McCloy's picture

It is no wonder they cheerlead banks daily since they are the only advertisers aside from Cash for Gold throwing money at CNBC. If this is not considered a conflict of interest what is?

How many Merrill commercials do they run an hour?


anony's picture

I've watched the channel about 1 hour total since October of last year.

Can't imagine why anyone would spend a second with Mark Haines.  This guy must have done something on a casting couch that is too hideous to contemplate to get and keep his job.

Cramer drove me insane, and lost me money a year and half ago on several of his picks, mad money on none, so he's unwelcome as well as a vaudevillian show-off.

There is no advantage that I can see from reading the WSJ, Forbes, or other so-called financial media.  If someone else has made money by devoting years to this continuing 'education' in finance I'd love to hear it.

I find it very hard to believe that when someone 'shares their book' with a national audience that they are doing so enrich the masses.

"I try hard not to be cynical, but I can't keep up",  about captures my take on all the programs and other outlets passing on financial advice. 

Reflexivity's picture

If someone else has made money by devoting years to this continuing 'education' in finance I'd love to hear it.

Please, ZH faithful readers, tell me:  What would you want to learn if you had the PERFECT Continuing Education in Finance material?

- just hot stock tips for short-term trading?

- long-term, buy and hold strategies

- exotic investments like commodities, forex, options, derivatives, etc.

- 401k IRA basics?

- Real estate investment

- Tax strategies for the wealthy (or soon to be wealthy)

- Other:  How to start, market, grow and eventually sell your own business*

I've always wondered what is the EXACT information that people are really looking for.  I hate to see channels like CNBC spoon feed viewers information that the producers decide is good for you (even when its not). If Continuing Financial Education was really demand driven, what would YOU want to learn specifically (from the list above or other suggestions).

I'll go first:  1.) I would like to learn more about how to do asset allocation when the world is becoming more intermixed and true diversification is becoming less and less possible

2.) I would also like to learn more about the role commodities play in a portfolio over the long-term, sans hype.

3.) What is the real deal with inflation/deflation.

I would like to learn all this from a highly-skilled objective expert without having to spend a lot of my own time doing my own research which has been largely, sadly to say, inconclusive.

* I find it interesting that Tyler, Marla and the other founders and publishers of ZH, with all of their knowledge and skills in high finance, have decided to spend a significant amount of time producing and selling financial information to market users instead of spending the same time they put in ZH into private trading activities.  Is there a higher ROI on selling financial information than there is in making real market trades based on it?  Who's to say, but that's why I included the Other.  Sometimes making a real business (i.e. producing and selling) is more profitable than trading (buying and selling).  No harm, no foul ZH, just bringing up an example of a successful publishing business.



Carl Spackler's picture

Well, Reflexivity, did you ever consider that the ZH team may actually be making a "real business" here? 

The next logical question (rhetorical) would be what stage of the product lifecycle would ZH be in.