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(Story updated to add Cramer's Lighting Round picks, his analysis of a stock that two analysts disagreed on, and his closing remarks on the poor timing of Apple's dividend.)
NEW YORK (
TheStreet) -- Investors need to put this market into context.
Taken by itself, investors might be puzzled about the rise in U.S. stocks, said Jim Cramer on his
"Mad Money" TV show Monday.
But he reminded viewers that money knows no borders, and every country has pension plans and wealthy individuals looking for places to invest their money. All of that money he said, has to go somewhere. But where?
China's stock market is still struggling, noted Cramer, as that country attempts to stave off a housing collapse. Meanwhile Russia remains the wild west of investing. India has terrible inflation, while Brazil is seeing a dramatic slowdown in growth. Investing in Europe remains dicey, said Cramer. And that only leaves America.
"America is the worst place to invest," said Cramer, "except for all those other countries." Even within the American markets, investors still have options, he said. Investors could choose bonds, but returns there remain stagnant. Investors could choose real estate, but the turn there may take years. Filtering out all other options, there only remains U.S. stocks, said Cramer.
Investors have a right to be skeptical of stocks too, admitted Cramer, after the financial meltdown, flash crash, Ponsi schemes, insider trading scandals and bankruptcies.
But at some point, stocks get so cheap that they're just too attractive to pass up. So with companies like
Apple(AAPL), a stock which Cramer owns for his charitable trust,
Action Alerts PLUS
, rewarding shareholders with a newly-announced dividend, what's not to love?
And its not just Apple that's wooing investors.
Domino's Pizza(DPZ) announced a $3 per share special dividend and
Cliff's Natural Resources(CLF) increased its dividend by 123% last week. Even the struggling
JPMorgan Chase(JPM), another Action Alerts PLUS name, boosted its dividend as well.
Cramer said when investors put the global economy into context, it's easy to see why so many investors are putting their money into great U.S. companies.