It is no secret that earnings season has been horrendous. Although every sector delivered a disappointment, Jim Cramer notes that there is still a silver lining.
“It has been almost non-stop depressing, and it is hard to recall another time when the misses were so widespread,” the “Mad Money” host said.
What is unique to this week of earnings season is that finally there is evidence of introspection on Wall Street. This is the time when money managers look back and buy the stocks of best-performing companies during a losing earnings period.
To bring investors up to speed on what big money will have an eye on this week, Cramer reviewed the biggest winners of earnings season.
Cramer still was singing the praise of McDonald’s with its all-day breakfast concept, along with the spectacular quarters delivered by both Facebook and Amazon. He added that the time to buy these two stocks are when analysts start to downgrade them.
“Google is the one that is most intriguing. I know the company’s stock seems vulnerable as it missed on both the top and the bottom line. I still think there is so much low-hanging fruit here, though,” the “Mad Money” host said.
With the combination of a weaker dollar and a large cash position, Cramer suspects that Alphabet’s numbers could go much higher if it had a huge buyback or smart acquisition to spark growth.
One stock that stays strong regardless of a bull or bear market is Hasbro, the toy maker that has been on fire all year, up 27 percent since the beginning of 2016.
Hasbro was hit with a downgrade from Piper Jaffrey on Tuesday over concerns with the valuation, yet the stock barely budged. Hasbro’s core brands such as Nerf, Monopoly, My Little Pony and Play-Doh have been very strong. But what really catapulted the stock was its relationship with Disney.
Hasbro’s chairman and CEO Brian Goldner spoke with Cramer and clarified why the relationship with Disney has been so strong: “The reason we have this wonderful strong partnership is we treat Disney’s brands like we treat our brands. We are a great brand owner and a storyteller.”
The cybersecurity space was crushed last week when FireEye reported a weak quarter, which hit cybersecurity stocks along with it.
The one exception was Fortinet, the provider of unified threat management solutions to enterprise customers. Fortinet provides an end-to-end offering, which eliminates the requirement to patch together various systems from different vendors.
Since its February lows, Fortinet is up 40 percent. One of the reasons is, when it last reported, it delivered a 2-cent earnings beat from a 9-cent basis and higher-than-anticipated revenues.
In fact, if the market rotates back into growth stocks on a fear of a worldwide slowdown, Cramer recommended Fortinet as the kind of name investors should reach for. Fortinet Chief Finance Officer Drew Del Matto explained the broad range of capabilities that the company offers to Cramer.
“Thinking from IOT to the cloud, that is what Fortinet’s security fabric does. We provide the software, the services, the solutions and the partnerships … to go from IOT to the cloud, to all points along the network,” Del Matto said.
Cramer always recommends investors keep some exposure to gold in their portfolios, to act as an insurance policy against both inflation and economic volatility.
While he typically recommends owning gold directly, through either bullion or the GLD, the ETF that tracks the price of precious metals, he also says that for those looking to own a gold miner, it should be Randgold Resources.
Randgold is the best run company in the industry, Cramer said, with low production costs and a track record of being able to locate gold because it is willing to mine in regions where others won’t do business.
The company has five mines across three African countries: Mali, the Ivory Coast and the Democratic Republic of Congo. And when the price of gold rises, Randgold tends to benefit the most.
However, when the company reported earnings last week, the stock was obliterated. Even though Randgold delivered a small earnings beat, production declined by 11 percent versus the previous quarter. Cramer spoke with Randgold’s CEO Mark Bristow, who commented on the quarter.
“Gold mining is not only about gold production, it’s about profitability. And if you look at our profits they are up quarter-on-quarter and year-on-year and we grew our cash, we’ve got no debt. Every quarter can’t be a better quarter than the previous one. That’s not real,” Bristow said.
In the Lightning Round, Cramer gave his take on a few caller-favorite stocks:
MFA Financial: “No, these are black boxes. These are companies that trade the yield curve or they trade asset-backed securities, and they are too hard for us to be able to figure out exactly what they do. I like a traditional real estate investment trust, like a Federal Realty or a Ventas.”
Avon Products: “I am so rooting for Sheri McCoy, who is the CEO and came on and laid out the story. But not yet. We’ve got to get a couple of quarters under our belt here.”