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Jim Cramer issued a "triple buy" Monday on
calling it a "pure play on cronyism" after the energy company hired The Abraham Group, former U.S. Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham's consulting firm, to help navigate the permitting process for its new liquefied natural gas (LNG) facilities.
Cramer told viewers of his "Mad Money" TV show Cheniere has begun construction on two LNG receiving terminals on the Gulf Coast and plans to build two more there. After hurricanes Katrina and Rita, Cramer believed plans for all Cheniere's LNG terminals might be scrapped as the Gulf could have been perceived as too risky a place to locate them. However, it seems momentum has not waned, and the projects are moving forward, he said.
Cramer said Cheniere still needs Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approval before it can proceed with its third and fourth facilities, which is where Abraham comes in. He's betting with Abraham's help, the projects will go through.
If they don't, though, the stock will get hurt. Additionally, Cheniere has an energy trading business, which adds to the risk in the stock, he said.
Give it 18 months to "work the Spencer magic," said Cramer. This is a multiyear positive regulator story, said Cramer.
Cendant Value Scope
( CD) CEO Henry Silverman joined Cramer to talk about his plans to split up the company. Cramer asked Silverman about the 6.57% drop in his company's stock today on the split-up announcement.
Silverman said he didn't believe it was the announcement of a split-up that caused the stock to drop today. He said the combination of hurricanes Katrina and Rita as well as the London terrorist bombings hurt Cendant's travel business. "We're not growing as quickly as we previously thought."
Second, he said some investors were disappointed Cendant is not doing a "levered recap."
Third, the fact that the split up won't happen for six to nine months disappointed some investors, he said.
Cramer asked Silverman why he wasn't buying back stock now.
Silverman said Cendant couldn't just buy back stock willy nilly. "You have to buy back pursuant to a plan." He also said there are balance sheet concerns in its car rental business, which will be surviving companies after the split-up. "The more equity you buy back, the more the equity of that company has shrunk. At some point you have a company which isn't financeable. If that's not financeable, this plan can't be executed."
Silverman said investors need to be patient. He believes the plan that's been put in place is the best way to unlock shareholder value over the longer term.
"Our strategy from a market perspective did fail," said Silverman. The strategy of doing business as a conglomerate has held down Cendant's share price, Silverman said. So, it's moving ahead with the breakup strategy to unlock shareholder value.
Cramer asked Silverman how his salary and compensation -- $24 million alone in 2004 -- should be reconciled with Cendant's stock price, which is down 33% since he took over in 1997.
"I don't think CEO pay should be determined ... by share price but by how you've grown your top and bottom line," he said.
"I'm not responsible for the
share price ... I'm responsible for the
earnings," he said. Earnings have grown at a rate "twice or three times higher than any of the yardsticks ... we measure ourself against," he said.
Cramer summed up the interview by saying while he is disappointed in the performance of the stock, which he owns for his
ActionAlertsPLUS charitable trust, he is not selling. "I think there's real value," he said.
Getting a Handle on Johnson Controls
Cramer remains bullish on
even after the stock's recent rise and good quarterly results Monday. Cramer said he isn't bullish just because the company, through its acquisition of
( YRK), is moving away from auto parts and toward energy controls.
He's bullish on the prospects that the company might split itself up into an auto parts business and a controls business. If the company decides to do so or even just sell the "hated auto business," that would leave "a pure play on saving money from higher energy costs ... I like the sound of that," said Cramer.
Cramer believes something indeed might be in the works based on the stock's recent rise. "It shouldn't be going up the way it's going up unless they're planning on at least splitting the company up. ... The numbers aren't
good," he said.
Cramer believes Johnson Controls can go to $75, and he would buy on any pullback. A downgrade Monday after the close has provided an opportunity, he said.
In response to a question about
, Cramer said the company is too levered to the U.S. automakers, and he is not a fan of the stock.
Schering Puts Hand to the Plough
( SGP) CEO Fred Hassan joined Cramer by telephone. Cramer asked Hassan why one should buy Schering-Plough's stock here.
Hassan said his company is moving from a "survive mode to a thrive mode."
Cramer asked if Schering's Nasonex, Remicade and Temodar products would be enough to propel the stock higher.
"No. They're not enough. ... We need to do more," said Hassan, adding that the company has been able to expand its product lines in the past two years and that he is optimistic it will be able to do so going forward.
Cramer asked Hassan about negative sentiment toward the pharmaceutical industry. "Who is pulling for your group?" he asked.
Hassan emphasized the benefits the pharmaceutical industry had brought to people and said his industry needed to do a better job promoting those benefits among the American public.
Cramer summed up the interview saying among drug stocks, Schering-Plough is "now the one to play." Hassan is a winner, he said.
Commenting on news after the close, Cramer said that even though
earnings were better than expected, the guidance was not what he was looking for. "Stay tuned." It's a work in progress, he said, but "under $29, you gotta buy that thing. That's ridiculous."
earnings "looked terrific.
( RFXCQ) finished selling last week. So, all the oils are now going to work, and we've got some great quarters coming."
reported a "great quarter," but "really hurt investors" by filing to do a secondary offering. "I don't respect that at all," said Cramer. Cramer said he understands the selling in the stock, and although he is upset with management, he wouldn't want to sell because the shares are too low.
Cramer was bullish on
International Business Machines
Bank of America
Chicago Mercantile Exchange
Cramer was bearish on
Premium Standard Farms
Zenith National Insurance
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At the time of publication, Cramer was long Cendant, GameStop and St. Joe.
James J. Cramer is a director and co-founder of TheStreet.com. He contributes daily market commentary for TheStreet.com's sites and serves as an adviser to the company's CEO. Outside contributing columnists for TheStreet.com and RealMoney.com, including Cramer, may, from time to time, write about stocks in which they have a position. In such cases, appropriate disclosure is made. To see his personal portfolio and find out what trades Cramer will make before he makes them, sign up for
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