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"The time to worry about the economy was a year ago," Jim Cramer told viewers of his "Mad Money" TV show Friday.
On the one-year anniversary of his now infamous
rant about the
and its chairman Ben Bernanke, Cramer reflected on his much publicized plea for help.
Cramer said his "rant heard around the world" was meant to avoid exactly what's happened over the past 12 months. He said the staggering losses in the financial sector could have all been avoided had the Fed only listened and cut rates aggressively.
The stock of the now defunct
fell 91.5% from a high of $118 a share before being salvaged by
JP Morgan Chase
, said Cramer.
Other financial stocks have faired only slightly better over the past year, he noted, including
( FRE) down 86%,
( MER) down 63%,
( LEH)down 69%, and
both down 59%.
"I saw it coming a year ago when I begged the Fed to listen," he said. Cramer said the Fed was simply offering too little too late, adding short-term interest rates needed to be cut aggressively and quickly to allow homeowners to refinance their bad loans.
He said those fears were all realized, with a tide of home foreclosures, job losses mounting for the last seven months in a row and unimaginable losses in the financial sector. He asked why Congress isn't investigating the poor actions of the Fed.
Cramer: Mass-with-Class Retailers
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"My rant wasn't about saving jobs on Wall Street," said Cramer. "It was about saving homes on Main Street."
A Game Changer
Cramer once again welcomed
co-founder, chairman and CEO Aubrey McClendon to the show to discuss his recent trip to Washington, DC and the future of the oil and energy industries.
McClendon said his talks with members of Congress focused around moving more of U.S. transportation to cleaner burning natural gas in efforts to both help the environment and rely less on higher-priced, foreign oil.
Natural gas has the potential to solve both America's energy and environmental needs, said McClendon, noting natural gas can cut fuel costs by 50% and is 66% cleaner than oil.
Natural gas is the country's best hope for energy independence, with the huge gas reserves discovered in the oil shale regions of the country, along with technological advances to retrieve that gas, he said.
McClendon also noted that many other countries have succeeded where America has been faltering. One-third of the cars in Argentina, he noted, run on natural gas, while one-fourth of the autos in Italy use the fuel.
Cramer again offered his support and recommendation of both McClendon and Chesapeake Energy.
Making It Happen
For "Speculation Friday" Cramer recommended
as another way to play what he's deemed "the year of natural gas." The company makes fuel systems technology that allows forklifts and other industrial and commercial vehicles to run on natural gas.
"The company may be speculative, but it's not a pipe dream," he said. The company supplies vehicles to some of the largest industrial and manufacturing companies in the world, he noted. With natural gas vehicles 40% to 60% cheaper to operate than their oil-based counterparts, companies will be clamoring to make the switch, he said.
Cramer also mentioned the European Union's goal of having 20% of the vehicles in Europe running on natural gas by 2020 as added incentive for the company. In addition, there is an initiative in California that would create a $2.9 billion fund for the purchase of alternative fuel vehicles.
In addition to Fuel Systems, Cramer mentioned Canadian-based
, which is set to launch an IPO on the Nasdaq in the coming months, as well as
, as two more natural gas stocks to consider.
Cramer was bullish on
Johnson & Johnson
He was bearish on
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At the time of publication, Cramer was not long on any stock.
Jim Cramer, host of the CNBC television program "Mad Money," is a Markets Commentator for TheStreet.com, Inc., and CNBC, and a director and co-founder of TheStreet.com. All opinions expressed by Mr. Cramer on "Mad Money" are his own and do not reflect the opinions of TheStreet.com or its affiliates, or CNBC, NBC UNIVERSAL or their parent company or affiliates. Mr. Cramer's opinions are based upon information he considers to be reliable, but neither TheStreet.com, nor CNBC, nor either of their affiliates and/or subsidiaries warrant its completeness or accuracy, and it should not be relied upon as such. Mr. Cramer's statements are based on his opinions at the time statements are made, and are subject to change without notice. No part of Mr. Cramer's compensation from CNBC or TheStreet.com is related to the specific opinions expressed by him on "Mad Money."
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