- Jim Cramer had creative parents. His mother was an artist, and his father was an entrepreneur who owned a company that sold wrapping paper, boxes, and bags.
- Cramer attended Harvard University where he earned a Bachelors degree in government in 1977, graduating magna cum laude, and his Juris Doctor degree at Harvard Law School in 1984.
- As a successful reporter in Tallahassee, Florida, Cramer covered the Ted Bundy murders.
- Cramer ran a hedge fund from 1987 to 2000 and had only one year of negative returns.
Early Life, Education, and Career
Jim Cramer was born February 10, 1955, in Wyndmoor, Pennsylvania, a suburb close to Philadelphia. His parents were hardworking and creative individuals. His mother was an artist, and his father was an entrepreneur who owned a company that sold wrapping paper, boxes, and bags to retailers.
As a young man, Cramer sold ice cream at Veterans Stadium during local Phillies games. In 1978, Cramer began working as a reporter. He covered the Ted Bundy murders in Tallahassee, Florida where he worked for a Democrat and for the Los Angeles Herald Examiner. Cramer was robbed many times in Florida and was even forced to live in his car at one point.
Cramer attended Harvard University where he earned a Bachelors degree in government in 1977, graduating magna cum laude. His journalism experience began in college when he became the President and Editor in Chief of the Harvard Crimson. He continued with his education at Harvard Law School where he earned his Juris Doctor degree in 1984.
While in law school, Cramer began investing in the stock market and even went as far as promoting his stock picks. His track record of successful stock picks landed him a job as a stockbroker with Goldman Sachs.
In 1987, Jim Cramer took his knowledge of the stock market and started his own hedge fund company, Cramer & Co. Cramer ran his fund from 1987 to 2000 and had only one year of negative returns. He eventually retired from his hedge fund in 2001, posting an overall annual average return of 24% from 1987 to 2001 and yielding an average of over $10 million per year over the entire 14-year period.
The CNBC show "Mad Money," which Jim Cramer is most well-known for hosting, aims to teach people how to think like professional investors rather than telling them what to think.
While still at his hedge fund, in 1996, Cramer co-founded TheStreet.com, a website that provides commentary and advice on the stock market. Cramer is the second-largest shareholder of the company and, at one point, the company reached a market cap of $1.7 billion. As of August 2019, however, Maven acquired TheStreet.
In 2005, Jim Cramer signed on to be the host of the CNBC show "Mad Money," for which he is most well-known. The goal of the show is to teach its viewers how to think like professional investors and not to tell people what to think. The popularity of the show has risen consistently over the past 10 years, making it one of the most popular investment shows on CNBC.
Cramer's success on "Mad Money" has allowed him to host and appear as a guest on multiple investment shows across multiple broadcasting companies. In addition, Cramer has been a guest on prominent shows unrelated to investment finance, such as "Arrested Development," "The Tonight Show" and "The Daily Show."
Net Worth and Current Influence
Jim Cramer has a total estimated net worth of $100 million, according to Money, Inc. The bulk of his net worth came from his success as a hedge fund manager, but his success did not stop there. Using his experience as a hedge fund manager, Cramer increased his net worth through a diversified strategy of multiple income streams.
The market cap and cash flow from his ownership of TheStreet.com have boosted his net worth as has his notoriety and success as the host of "Mad Money." "Mad Money" has maintained Cramer's strong influence within the investment finance realm. He is a leading personality for stock market advice.
When Cramer retired from his hedge fund in 2001, he posted an overall annual average return of 24% with a yield averaging over $10 million per year over the entire 14-year period.
Most Influential Quotes
Cramer once said, “I’ve lost tremendous amounts of money in various markets, and I think that that’s something that makes you better at my job, not worse.”
The quote is a perfect example of the type of person Cramer has become through his experience as a hedge fund manager and as an on-air investment adviser. If an investor is in the game long enough, they are bound to lose money. But it is what the investor does with that learning that makes them a success or failure.
“I will stand up for what I believe and for what I have always believed," Cramer also said. "Every person has a right to be rich in this country, and I want to help them get there.”
This embodies Cramer's mentality when he provides advice on his show "Mad Money."