The best stocks are never cheap, Jim Cramer reminded his Mad Money viewers Thursday. That's why when they become cheap, investors need to be ready to pounce. Meaningful pullbacks do happen, Cramer said, and Thursday was a perfect example.
Cramer has liked the stock of Costco (COST) - Get Report for years and it's always been expensive. But today, Costco shares got hit, giving patient investors a rare opportunity to buy at a great price. The bears argued that Costco may be hitting its peak members-per-club and peak revenue-per-member. They also cited challenges in China. But Cramer said Costco is a best-of-breed operator that thrives in any economy and knows what it takes to excel in China.
Then there's Microsoft (MSFT) - Get Report , which announced a dividend boost and a $40 billion stock buy-back program. Cramer said now is a terrific time to invest in Microsoft. Likewise with Wendy's (WEN) - Get Report , another high-flying stock that gave investors a rare chance to get in on a restaurant chain that's investing heavily in its future.
Cramer said investors must always take advantage of weakness and do some buying when high-quality stocks go on sale.
Executive Decision: Expedia Group
Okerstrom said that Expedia has incredible brands including Hotels.com, Orbitz and Trivago. Consumers like to have choices, he said, and many customers have great relationships with their many different brands, but they all are one family that shares technology.
In addition to their own brands, Expedia's technology also powers many other corporate travel destinations and services as well. Okerstrom noted that Expedia is the fourth-largest corporate travel operator.
When asked about the outlook for travel, Okerstrom said people continue to want to explore the world and there are secular trends that are moving away them from spending on things and towards spending on experiences. There's also a growing middle class around the world that now has the means to travel for the first time.
Finally, when asked about their successful loyalty program at Hotels.com, Okerstrom said that the program is very simple. Guests stay 10 nights and get one night free, and they can stay anywhere they like and are not restricted to any single chain.
Good Season for Chipotle
It's that time of year again, the time when money managers double down on their winners and coast toward big gains in January. Among the biggest winners for the year, Cramer said, there's one name that stands out: Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG) - Get Report is up 92% for the year.
Cramer said Chipotle has finally passed the 18-month mark since its most recent food safety scare in back in 2017. The stock has more than tripled from its February 2017 lows of just $247. In addition to retraining its staff, Chipotle has also undergone a transformation, adding DoorDash delivery to 1,500 locations, embracing digital ordering and adding new menu items that are bringing customers back to the restaurant chain and its popular loyalty program.
While shares are expensive at 38 times earnings, Cramer said, Chipotle is one of those companies that deserves its multiple and is always expensive. He endorse buying the stock for the long term.
Cramer and the AAP team are trimming a couple of bank stocks to capitalize on the recent outperformance of the group. 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.
Am I Diversified?
In the "Am I Diversified?" segment, Cramer spoke with callers and responded to tweets sent via Twitter to @JimCramer to see if investors' portfolios have what it takes for today's markets.
Cramer said he loved this portfolio.
Cramer said Apple and Microsoft haven't traded together in years, so both can be in the same portfolio.
The third portfolio had Spirit Airlines (SAVE) - Get Report , Canopy Growth (CGC) - Get Report , Planet Fitness (PLNT) - Get Report , Target (TGT) - Get Report and Facebook (FB) - Get Report . as its top five stocks.
Cramer said he's wary of Canopy Growth after the stock's decline, but said the portfolio was diversified.
Cramer also blessed this portfolio as diversified.
Oil Isn't What It Was
In his "No-Huddle Offense" segment, Cramer told viewers to forget the oil companies. If these stocks didn't have a sustained move this week, then they've got some real problems.
Cramer said there's a few reasons for his thinking. In years past, a major disruption of oil production, like we saw this week in Saudi Arabia, would have sent the markets reeling. But with so much supply now flowing from the U.S., and more on the way thanks to additional pipeline capacity, oil just doesn't matter like it used to.
Even natural gas, which was hailed as a bridge fuel to the future, is now struggling, as utilities would rather build wind and solar over natural gas.
At the end of the day, Cramer posited that younger fund managers lump oil and gas in with coal -- an outdated energy industry that's quickly being replaced by electric cars and solar panels.
In the Lightning Round, Cramer was bullish on DocuSign (DOCU) - Get Report , Micron Technology (MU) - Get Report , Clearway Energy (CWEN) - Get Report , Revolve Group (RVLV) - Get Report , Etsy (ETSY) - Get Report and AT&T (T) - Get Report .
On Real Money, Cramer notes that U.S. Steel (X) - Get Report forecasts that things are only getting worse as a host of end markets weaken both here and in Europe. Get more of his insights with a free trial subscription to Real Money.
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At the time of publication, Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS had a position in MSFT, AAPL, AMZN, DIS, CVS, HD, FB, ABT, TWLO.