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NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Everyone is expecting lousy earnings next week, Jim Cramer told "Mad Money" viewers Friday, and when the bar is set low, even mediocre news can send stocks higher.
That's why Cramer said his game plan will be paying attention to a few key earnings reports.
Cramer said on Monday he'll be watching the German industrial production numbers as well as any news out of China over the weekend. In a "less is more" scenario, Cramer said he wants to see bad news from Germany, which will force them to play ball with the rest of Europe, but good news from China.Tuesday brings earnings from Alcoa (AA) and Yum Brands (YUM), two stocks very closely levered to the health of the Chinese economy. Cramer said Alcoa will likely be hurt by Chinese aluminum production, but he likes Yum Brands in the low $60s. Then on Wednesday, Costco (COST) will be reporting. Cramer said that owning expensive stocks in this environment is risky, which is why anyone still owning Costco is being greedy. Also on Wednesday, a FedEx (FDX) analyst meeting. Cramer said with the bar set low, any positive numbers could send that stock higher. For Thursday, it's grocery chain Safeway (SWY) that's due to report. Cramer said Safeway remains "a falling knife" and he much prefers Whole Foods (WFM). He was also bullish on trucking company JB Hunt (JBHT), a stock that could send the transports higher as its not exposed to Asia, nor does it ship crops or coal. Finally on Friday, it's Wells Fargo (WFC) and JPMorgan Chase (JPM), two stocks he owns for his charitable trust,
Executive DecisionIn the "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer sat down with Nolan Watson, president and CEO of Sandstorm Gold (SAND), a company that helps finance gold mining operations in return for a percentage of the gold produced at that mine. Watson said that unlike a traditional bank, Sandstorm is 100% equity financed, which means it can take on risk over longer periods of time. He said miners actually prefer to work with Sandstorm versus offering equity themselves, since many mining executives own shares themselves and don't like dilution.
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