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) -- China is more important than we are, according to Jim Cramer. He told

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"Mad Money"

viewers Thursday that positive news out of China was all it took to lift our slumping markets.

Today's upward move in the big-cap industrials and tech stocks could not be traced to anything positive happening here in the U.S., but were caused by a rise in Chinese purchasing, which took the markets by surprise.

Everything from


(CAT) - Get Report



(FDX) - Get Report


Joy Global


was on the move as a result.

The markets move on expectations, Cramer continued, and there have been three in control as of late. The first is that the U.S. economy is struggling, but holding its own. Second is that Europe remains a disaster. Third, that China is a disappointment. It's the change in the latter the markets were responding to, said Cramer, as China posted some of its strongest economic numbers for the year.

That one data point from China was even able to lift stocks like


(NKE) - Get Report

, which sells big into China, as well as


(ETN) - Get Report

, a stock Cramer owns for his charitable trust,

Action Alerts PLUS, and even coal exporter

Peabody Energy

(BTU) - Get Report


Cramer noted that China is also a huge market for tech, and may be able to single-handedly rescue that troubled sector.

Charting a Course

In the "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer sat down with Sam Thomas, chairman, president and CEO of

Chart Industries

(GTLS) - Get Report

, a natural gas liquids company with shares up 20% for the year but which also just reported an earnings miss of 8 cents a share.

Thomas said our country will be better off using domestic natural gas as a surface vehicle fuel, but so far the timing has been taking longer than expected. He said it's been a complex process to provide both a supply of natural gas as well as the demand for it at the same time.

"The chickens and the eggs are ready to do their parts," joked Thomas, but it certainly will take longer than one or two years to get both natural gas trucks on the road and stations to refuel them.

Thomas also commented on his company's other quarterly disappointment, its biomedical products division. He said that while Chart Industries anticipated consolidation in the industry, the pullback in demand was more than expected. Once that consolidation is completed, however, Thomas sees that business improving.

In closing, Thomas said Chart remains a great growth story and will be a key supplier in a rapidly growing industry. However, it has been difficult to predict exactly when that will occur.

Stick With Retail

Gloom is not a strategy, it's a feeling, Cramer reminded viewers, and he sounded off against the countless hedge fund managers betting against the retail sector.

Cramer said these big money managers never take the time to determine what might actually be going on in retail. Instead, they take their cues from the weak results of the weaker players, then extrapolate that the entire group must be bad.

That's why so many funds were shorting

PVH Corp

(PVH) - Get Report

, said Cramer, and why the stock was able to pop 20% on the news of its



acquisition Wednesday.

The American consumer is alive and well, noted Cramer, despite the continued weak employment in our country. That's why investors need to stick with the strong retail companies, those that can execute and deliver on earnings and not just assume that as goes one, so go they all.

Lightning Round

In the Lightning Round, Cramer was bullish on

Dunkin Brands

(DNKN) - Get Report





Bio-Reference Laboratories






Cooper Companies

(COO) - Get Report



(AGN) - Get Report


M&T Bank

(MTB) - Get Report



(BWA) - Get Report


Discover Financial Services

(DFS) - Get Report


Cramer was bearish on


(NFLX) - Get Report


Hudson City Bancorp



Executive Decision

In his second "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer spoke with David Henry, president and CEO of

Kimco Realty

(KIM) - Get Report

, a shopping center REIT with a 3.9% yield. Kimco just delivered an earnings beat of four cents a share on a 7% rise in revenue while also delivering upside guidance.

Henry was optimistic on Kimco's outlook, saying occupancy rates are on the rise at most centers, even for smaller chains and merchants. He also noted that Kimco has divested itself of many of its non-shopping center assets, making it a pure play on shopping with just 3% of its portfolio now in other areas.

Kimco, like most REITs, is constantly working to upgrade its portfolio of properties. He said the company is always looking to sell properties in secondary markets or those with low-quality tenants and purchase better properties with higher-paying tenants.

When asked about the grocery sector, a segment that's been under pressure by

Whole Foods


and others, Henry said Kimco is concerned about the group, which operates under razor thin margins. He said that Kimco always takes a hard look at its grocery store anchors.

Cramer remained bullish on Kimco, saying it offers both growth and dividends.

Are You Diversified?

In the "Am I Diversified" segment, Cramer spoke with callers and responded to tweets sent via Twitter to


to see if investors' portfolios have what it takes for today's markets.

The first portfolio included:

Exxon Mobil

(XOM) - Get Report



(S) - Get Report


UnitedHealth Group

(UNH) - Get Report



(WMT) - Get Report


Walt Disney

(DIS) - Get Report


Cramer said this portfolio was "perfection."

The second portfolio's top holdings included:


(V) - Get Report





Enterprise Product Partners

( EDP),

Lockheed Martin

(LMT) - Get Report


American International Group

(AIG) - Get Report


Cramer said this portfolio was also properly diversified.

The third portfolio had:

SPDT Gold Shares

(GLD) - Get Report



(BA) - Get Report



(EBAY) - Get Report



(DVN) - Get Report


Abbott Labs

(ABT) - Get Report

as its top five stocks.

Cramer was also bullish on this portfolio, saying that it, too, was perfectly diversified.

In Closing...

In his closing comments, Cramer said both


(SBUX) - Get Report



posted blowout earnings that will have a positive effect on the markets Friday.

To watch replays of Cramer's video segments, visit the Mad Money page on CNBC


-- Written by Scott Rutt in Washington, D.C.

To email Scott about this article, click here:

Scott Rutt

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At the time of publication, Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS had a position in AIG, ETN and SBUX.

Jim Cramer, host of the CNBC television program "Mad Money," is a Markets Commentator for, Inc., and CNBC, and a director and co-founder of All opinions expressed by Mr. Cramer on "Mad Money" are his own and do not reflect the opinions of 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, 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 is related to the specific opinions expressed by him on "Mad Money."

None of the information contained in "Mad Money" constitutes a recommendation by Mr. Cramer, or CNBC that any particular security, portfolio of securities, transaction, or investment strategy is suitable for any specific person. You must make your own independent decisions regarding any security, portfolio of securities, transaction, or investment strategy mentioned on the program. Mr. Cramer's past results are not necessarily indicative of future performance. Neither Mr. Cramer, nor, nor CNBC guarantees any specific outcome or profit, and you should be aware of the real risk of loss in following any strategy or investments discussed on the program. The strategy or investments discussed may fluctuate in price or value and you may get back less than you invested. Before acting on any information contained in the program, you should consider whether it is suitable for your particular circumstances and strongly consider seeking advice from your own financial or investment adviser.

Some of the stocks mentioned by Mr. Cramer on "Mad Money" are held in Mr. Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS Portfolio. When that is the case, appropriate disclosure is made on the program and in the "Mad Money" recap available on The Action Alerts PLUS Portfolio contains all of Mr. Cramer's personal investments in publicly-traded equity securities only, and does not include any mutual fund holdings or other institutionally managed assets, private equity investments, or his holdings in, Inc. Since March 2005, the Action Alerts PLUS Portfolio has been held by a Trust, the realized profits from which have been pledged to charity. Mr. Cramer retains full investment discretion with respect to all securities contained in the Trust. Mr. Cramer is subject to certain trading restrictions, and must hold all securities in the Action Alerts PLUS Portfolio for at least one month, and is not permitted to buy or sell any security he has spoken about on television or on his radio program for five days following the broadcast.