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NEW YORK (
) -- "The best thing you can say about this market is that we weren't down more," a solemn Jim Cramer told the viewers of his
TV show Monday, after a 635-point slide in the
Dow Jones Industrial Average
He said the downgrade of U.S. debt was like hitting the markets with a big stick, but the day's trading action was curious, to say the least.
Cramer concluded that today's market action was akin to a slow-motion flash crash, one where the machines, not men, were at the helm. How did he reach that conclusion? Cramer said it's because the market acknowledged no positives and instead took everything lower, which is not rational investing. "When everything gets crushed, that's machines, not man," he concluded.
Cramer noted that utilities should have been up today, with energy prices falling off a cliff, but they weren't. Consumer products companies, the safety stocks of the markets, should have been up today as well, but they weren't either. Gold stocks should've seen gains, he said, but there again was nothing but red ink.
Take the case of
Johnson & Johnson
. Cramer said this company was down 2.5% today, yet the company yields 3.7%, which is far better than the 2.25% from a 10-year Treasury bond.
Despite the company's recent slew of over-the-counter drug recalls, Cramer said he'd be a buyer of J&J once its yield hits 4%. The company trades at just 12 times earnings with a 5% growth rate.
Cramer also looked into
, a stock he's liked for a long time. He said that Eaton also has a big yield, but unlike J&J, Eaton's earnings fell off a cliff in the recession of 2009, something the stock is getting punished for now. Cramer said he'd wait for a 4%-to-5% yield in Eaton as a cushion to make up for the more unpredictable earnings.
"Things aren't as bad as 2008," Cramer reiterated to viewers, but that doesn't mean we can't immunize ourselves from risk by waiting for even lower prices, even in companies that are safer than U.S. government bonds.