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NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Just how much downside is left in the market? Jim Cramer told "Mad Money" viewers Thursday it all depends on Friday's non-farm payroll numbers.
Get the right number and all could be well, but get the wrong number and the selling will continue.
Cramer explained the target non-farm payroll number is 160,000 new jobs. Above that number and the market will sell off on fear interest rates are on the rise. But below that number the market will sell off because the economy is weaker than we thought. That only leaves a small window for success, said Cramer, which is why he's calculating tomorrow's worst-case scenario.The last leg of the market's rally began in February, said Cramer, when the Dow Jones Industrial Average sat at 13,800. The move was spurred by a wave of takeovers from the likes of Warren Buffett, Comcast (CMCSA) and Dell (DELL). Of the stocks in the Dow, Cramer noted there are only 11 that are up huge since February and are therefore at risk for big declines. He said American Express (AXP), Boeing (BA) and Cisco (CSCO) are likely to hold onto their gains, but others including Hewlett-Packard (HPQ), 3M (MMM) and IBM (IBM) could see their gains wiped out in minutes. Calculating the worst case for all of these Dow stocks, Cramer said he's expecting a 600-point selloff if tomorrow's employment number goes awry. That may seem like a big plummet, he said, but it's only a 3% to 4% decline that would send the markets back to Dow 14,360, a more than reasonable level if you're prepared for it.