Jim Cramer likes retiring McDonald's (MCD) CEO Jim Skinner, as well as his predecessor Jim Cantalupo. But he is waiting to buy the company's stock until new CEO Don Thompson settles into his new role.
"McDonald's seems to produce a lot of remarkable people. It would surprise me if Thompson, if he doesn't do a great job. Apparently, he was very inventive. I like to think of McDonald's as a technology play. They seem to constantly re-invent things," Cramer says.
However, he says the company will still face a transition period, no matter how good the new team is. He is waiting at least a quarter before considering the company. New CEOs, he says, often need time to learn how to talk to Wall Street. He says investors might get a chance to buy the stock with a 3% dividend yield, taking out some of the risk of the transition."Any time there is a change of a CEO who is incredibly popular, I get gun shy because then I believe you have to wait and see. I am not going to change my mind. I want to wait and see," Cramer says. "As great as the transition team might be, as great as the new CEO might be, my experience is there is still a transition period and that's not a great time to buy stocks even if the new CEO sounds fabulous." But, he still likes the company overall. McDonald's, he says, has been great at grooming talent. He says he will miss Skinner, who he says was remarkable. "McDonalds is one of the rare breeds, Home Depot, the same thing, where these companies are major turnarounds in our life time and they are very eager to return to shareholders with bountiful dividends and have managed to find places to grow even in places where there was no growth," Cramer says.
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