Search Jim Cramer's "Mad Money" trading recommendations using our exclusive "Mad Money" Stock Screener.
NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- It's all about the expectations, Jim Cramer told his Mad Money viewers Wednesday as he attempted to explain several seemingly counter-intuitive moves as earnings season rolls on.
For many individual investors, buying stocks is simply a matter of buying what you know. However, for institutional investors picking stocks is all about expectations and whether a company is likely to surprise or disappoint based on what Wall Street is anticipating.
That's how stocks like Panera Bread (PNRA) and Buffalo Wild Wings (BWLD) can report mediocre results and see their shares soar, while stocks like Tableau Software (DATA) can post a 65% increase in revenue but still see shares plummet 10.6%.
Cramer said UPS (UPS) and Norfolk Southern (NSC) both surprised Wall Street, which is why their shares rallied, as did Skechers (SKX), which surpassed even heightened expectations, sending its shares soaring by 12.6%.
These moves may seem confusing based on the numbers alone, but when compared to the expectations they make perfect sense.
Cramer on Yelp and Twitter
There's no denying that things are bad at both companies, Cramer said, with shares of Yelp plummeting 25% after it reported, while Twitter skidded 14.5% after its release. Both of these companies blew it, he said, as both were big deals that are now rapidly becoming small ones.
Yelp is rapidly becoming irrelevant and needs to sell itself immediately, Cramer said, while Twitter still has hope for a recovery -- but the earliest that is likely to occur is 2016. That makes Yelp a sell and Twitter a wait-and-see situation.