What's most important to the stock market? No, it's not trade or tariffs or interest rates, Jim Cramer told his Mad Money viewers Wednesday.
It's growth. Wall Street loves growth. If your company has it, your stock will be rewarded, but without it, look out below.
Growth is why Walt Disney Co. (DIS) decided to up its offer for 21st Century Fox (FOXA) assets while still ending the day higher. Investors will keep rewarding the company until those prized growth assets are fully valued.
Cramer said the 6.5% rise in Thor Industries (THO) came because rival Winnebago (WGO) said inventory levels had returned to normal, meaning growth will be returning to the entire sector. That's also why Cramer likes Spotify (SPOT) , Twitter (TWTR) , Square (SQ) and Paypal (PYPL) . All of these names have accelerating growth.
What's the opposite of growth? Cramer called out Oracle's (ORCL) 7.4% decline after the company changed its reporting to obscure how quickly their cloud offerings are being adopted. Likewise with Starbucks (SBUX) , which fell 9% today after management appears oblivious to the company's slowdown in same-store sales.
Cramer and the AAP team will be closely monitoring the results of JP Morgan (JPM) , Citigroup (C) and Goldman Sachs (GS) in light of the Fed's Comprehensive Capital Analysis Review. Find out what they're telling their investment club members and get in on the conversation with a free trial subscription to Action Alerts PLUS.
Has GE Hit Bottom?
Now that General Electric (GE) has been booted from the Dow Jones Industrial Average after 110 years, is the bottom finally at hand for the beleaguered manufacturing giant? Cramer said he doesn't think it is.
We've been hearing that GE has bottomed for months, Cramer explained, and yet the stock continues to head lower. The problem is that GE was the most opaque company imaginable, so investors simply don't know how bad the troubles in its long-term care division actually are. Maybe the write-downs are done, maybe they're not.
The fact is that GE changed a long time ago, we just didn't know it. The company still makes terrific jet engines and turbines and healthcare equipment, but all of that may be overshadowed by healthcare losses yet to come.
As for the Dow, Cramer said, it's ironic that they have simply changed one ailing healthcare company with another: GE is being replaced by Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. (WBA) .
Over on Real Money, Cramer writes in-depth about General Electric's woes. Get more of his insights with a free trial subscription to Real Money.
Executive Decision: Williams-Sonoma
For his "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer sat down with Laura Alber, CEO of Williams-Sonoma (WSM) , the home goods retailer with shares up 21% over the past three months.
Alber said when she first started with the company 21 years ago, 40% of their business was catalog sales. That gave them a leg up in the ecommerce world, as they already knew how to ship directly to customers and how to market their products one-to-one. Williams-Sonoma currently derives 54% of sales online.
Alber said the future is all about personalization, whether that's online or in store, Alber continued. Her company is working on new technology to provide customers with a 3-D augmented reality room planner, for instance, that will help make designing a room a lot easier.
Williams-Sonoma also continues to focus on how people shop, reinvesting into their stores and providing customers with a wide assortment of brands and innovative new products to fit their lives. When asked about the company's video marketing efforts, Alber said videos on YouTube and Facebook really work.
It's Intuit vs. H&R Block
We live in a world where technology almost always triumphs, Cramer reminded viewers, and nowhere is that more true than in the tax-preparation market, where H&R Block (HRB) continues to battle it out with Intuit (INTU) , makers of TurboTax and QuickBooks software.
H&R Block is the old-line player, tied to its 10,000 physical locations. When the company reported earnings last week, the results were fine, but the guidance for 2019 was lackluster as management admitted the company was not as relevant to consumers as they're like to be. H&R Block has since announced the closing of 400 locations.
In contrast, Intuit is a diversified software company that has products for both individuals and small businesses. The company makes money year-round and the trend is clearly in favor of doing taxes online, rather than visiting a physical location, especially after Intuit introduced TurboTax Live, which lets customers speak to a live tax professional if then need help.
Cramer said these two companies aren't really comparable anymore given that in-person tax prep seems to be in secular decline as the rise of digitization and the cloud continues to conquer all.
In the Lightning Round, Cramer was bullish on Emerson Electric (EMR) , Under Armour (UAA) , NovoCure (NVCR) , FireEye (FEYE) , Proofpoint (PFPT) , Palo Alto Networks (PANW) and Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY) .
Executive Decision: Aimmune Therapeutics
In his second "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer sat down with Dr. Stephen Dilly, former CEO of Aimmune Therapeutics (AIMT) , a company leading the change against food allergies.
Dilly said there are over 20 million people with food allergies in the U.S. and three million with peanut allergies. For many of these patients, the problem is not staying away from peanuts, but staying away from things that contain peanuts. Many times, you simply cannot tell what's in the foods you eat and that's especially dangerous for kids.
Aimmune aims to introduce patients to the proteins they're allergic to and build up their tolerance to levels that can protect them from these accidental exposures, many of which are very small doses.
Aimmune has many collaborations and partnerships, Dilly added, and eventually hopes to allow kids to reintroduce things like milk and eggs back into their diets.
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