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NEW YORK (

Stockpickr

) -- Regardless of why a stock is in the news, it never hurts to hear what a professional investor has to say about it. The key is to gather as much information as you can in order to make the most informed investment decisions you can. As Jim Cramer (read an excerpt from his

new book here

) often reminds, investors must do their homework.

So what has Cramer had to say lately about today's headline-makers? At Stockpickr, we've combed through his recent

RealMoney

blog posts, "Mad Money" TV show recaps and "Stop Trading!" segments to find out

what he thinks about some of today's newsworthy stocks

.

Best Buy

(BBY) - Get Report

: Citigroup analyst Kate McShane expects Best Buy, which is one of

this week's Rocket Stocks

, to

beat the average analyst expectation

for third-quarter EPS of 43 cents when it reports tomorrow. McShane now expects the company to earn 45 cents a share, compared with her previous forecast for 38 cents a share. She also increased her price target on the stock to $45 from $40.

On Friday's

"Mad Money" show

, in his game plan for this week, Cramer said that to impress the Street, Best Buy needs to earn more than 45 cents a share. He recommended buying the stock on Monday since it hadn't had a big run ahead of earnings.

He'd also called it a buy on his

Dec. 9 "Mad Money"

show.

Who Owns Best Buy? George Soros Bill Nygren

On Dec. 10, in a

post to his RealMoney blog

, Cramer pretended he was a retail analyst and wrote:

"With the holiday season upon us, it's time to step up to the retail sector and go fully invested in this segment. Channel checks indicate that the consumer is spending more than we thought, and some items -- particularly boots, housewares, electronics and warmer clothing -- are very strong. The strength lies not just in the department stores and the discounters but also in the clubs and big-box retailers.

"What's selling the strongest right now? Personal computers and smartphones, with our channel checks showing especially brisk sales of

Apple

(AAPL) - Get Report

iPhones and iMacs. We are also seeing a brisk business at

Staples

(SPLS)

for

Hewlett-Packard

(HPQ) - Get Report

computers as well as printers and cartridges. Best Buy confirms similar sales with its 'Apple store within a store' selling an immense amount of product and big-screen TVs being hard to stock."

Cisco

(CSCO) - Get Report

: BMO Capital upgraded Cisco

to outperform

from market perform, with a $30 price target.

Who Owns Cisco? Karen Finerman Ken Fisher

In a Dec. 9

blog post

, Cramer wrote:

"The tech market has gone from loving everything to hating everything, and it's obvious when

Texas Instruments

(TXN) - Get Report

and

Xilinx

(XLNX) - Get Report

say great things and no one cares. This on top of the muted reaction to Cisco's John Chambers' incredible bullishness about next year -- trust me, it was incredible and in keeping with his upbeat earnings conference call, so no slippage -- and the blah reaction to

Nvidia's

(NVDA) - Get Report

triumph over

Intel

(INTC) - Get Report

. (Although we continue to see

Advanced Micro Devices

(AMD) - Get Report

run, because it, like its sister also-ran in telco,

Sprint Nextel

(S) - Get Report

, it's a decent spec."

Citigroup

(C) - Get Report

: Citigroup has reached an agreement

to repay $20 billion

in government bailout funds.

On Thursday, Cramer

wrote in a blog post

:

"Buy Citigroup.

No

, not in the open market, but on the deal or deals, depending upon how heavy-handed the government's going to be.

"I initially recommended this stock in the low $3s and saw it go to $5, where I begged the government nightly on my show to sell its 7 billion shares. But no, the government played the market and gave up a very big gain. But now here we are back again at $3 and change, and the government is going to price its stock, and the company might do an additional 6 billion shares or more to pay back TARP.

"So you are looking at about 14 billion shares hitting the market.

"While I can't claim that this one is going to be as good at the big

Ford

(F) - Get Report

deal, I

do

believe that with only

Wells Fargo

(WFC) - Get Report

as a holdout, you would be buying into the second-to-last large offering in the group, and that alone is very meaningful.

Who Owns Citigroup? John Paulson Maverick Capital

"I think that Citigroup has the ability to earn a ton of money once the global economy moves into higher gear -- only 50% of its business is in America -- and the company has performed surprisingly well during this period of downsizing and endless heckling. There have been real staff reductions, real bonus reductions, real real estate deductions and a wiser culture put in.

"This company's book value will be a dollar or more above where the deal comes, which is encouraging. The company's book of business of bad loans has peaked; I think that the Citi Holdings part of the equation is more seasoned and less "bad" than it was.

"You buy it and you sit and wait for three years -- at the end of 2012 you should have $12."

Visa

(V) - Get Report

: Standard & Poor's is

adding Visa to the S&P 500

index, along with

Mead Johnson

(MJN)

,

Ross Stores

(ROST) - Get Report

,

SAIC

(SAI)

and

Cliffs Natural Resources

(CLF) - Get Report

. Also, Robert Baird

upgraded Visa to outperform

, with a $100 price target.

On Dec. 1, Cramer recommended Visa on

"Stop Trading!"

For more of what Cramer's had to say lately about stocks in the news, check out the

Cramer's Take

portfolio.

(Editor's note: At the time of this publication, Cramer owned Cisco for his Action Alerts PLUS charitable trust.)

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