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NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Things in America might just be better than you think.
Jim Cramer voiced those sentiments to "Mad Money" viewers Monday as he called into question the government's latest retail sales numbers, which paint a dismal picture of the American consumer.According to Cramer, individual companies are telling a different tale. Cramer said if the government's retail sales numbers were indeed so awful, how do you explain that shares of Wal-Mart (WMT), Target (TGT) and Costco (COST) are all hitting new 52-week highs? Both Ford Motor (F) and General Motors (GM) reported an uptick in sales, not a downtick, he added. Even in the beleaguered banking sector, Citigroup (C) reported better than expected earnings and Wells Fargo (WFC) has positive things to say. Strip out the monster trading loss at J.P. Morgan Chase (JPM) and even that bank saw strength in small business lending and credit card activity. Cramer said the government's view of the economy is at odds with data from corporate America and he's siding with corporate America. He said the market didn't crater on Monday's news, and that's also a positive sign that things are simply better than the government is telling us. This being an election year, he added, don't expect that to change anytime soon.