Here's an idea, let's all try to be a little less cynical so we can all make more money. Those were Jim Cramer's words for his Mad Money viewers Thursday. Cramer said optimism is running scarce on Wall Street these days, but he reassured them that all of our current problems can be fixed and many companies are already turning challenges into opportunities.
It's time to rethink all of this doom and gloom and think like Matt Amodio, the guy who just won Jeopardy 38 times in a row. When asked what he's going to do with his $1.5 million winnings, Amodio said he's investing in the stock market using index funds and will buy more on any declines. That's one smart guy, Cramer said.
For the Action Alerts PLUS portfolio, Chris Versace and Bob Lang are telling their investment club members that Wells Fargo's (WFC) - Get Free Report made progress, but they can't bank on it. Instead, they say, 'we want to be in companies with strong competitive positions with pronounced multi-year tailwinds benefitting their businesses.' Read more of their investing insights and trading ideas, especially for the financials, on Action Alerts PLUS.
It's far too easy to be cynical, but it's time to get more positive. All of the things the bears are worried about, are within our power to fix. Case in point: the port congestion issue. This has been going on for months, but finally, the White House got involved and mandated the ports start operating continuously until the problems are resolved. As for the shortage of truckers, Cramer said companies just need to bite the bullet and start paying more for labor.
Even the shortage of semiconductors is fixable. All it takes is one or more automakers to team up with a semiconductor maker and build a new foundry here in the U.S. In return for capital, these automakers could be first in line for all the chips they need.
As for that pesky inflation. Cramer noted that consumers are flush with cash, with more savings than they've had in a long time. People can handle a little inflation.
It's time to start thinking positive, Cramer concluded. Matt Amodio is rarely wrong.
Executive Decision: Domino's
In his first "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer spoke with Ritch Allison, CEO of Domino's Pizza DPZ, after the pizza delivery giant reported its first same-store sales decline in years. Cramer called it "the end of an era."
Allison said not to worry, business at Domino's is still going strong, even if the company wasn't able to match those record-setting numbers during the height of the pandemic. Domino's opened four new stores every day during the quarter, setting themselves up for growth for a long time to come.
Domino's currently has 6,500 locations across the U.S., but Allison noted that our country could easily support 8,000 locations. The brand is also strong internationally, where franchisees tailor the experience to their local markets by buying local and hiring local. With only 400 locations in China, the sky's the limit for Domino's.
When asked about the labor shortage here at home, Allison said that immigration has always been the backbone of hiring at Domino's. Immigrants start as delivery drivers and work their way up to millionaire franchise owners. It truly is the American dream, he said, but it's happening a lot less than it used to.
Turning to the topic of their company-owned locations, Allison explained that Domino's owns stores for three reasons... to lead, develop great people and because it makes a lot of economic sense.
Finally, Allison commented on their driverless delivery trials by saying they continue to learn a lot from the program and as the technology evolves, Domino's will be at the forefront.
Executive Decision: Uber Freight
For his second "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer spoke with Lior Ron, head of privately held Uber Freight, to see if the company can help save the holidays by connecting truckers with containers that need to get to retail store shelves.
Ron explained that the trucking industry has lost 6% of its workforce during the pandemic, causing the supply chain to become completely unbalanced. He said it's an industry-wide problem, but one that can be solved with technology that makes drivers more efficient.
It's harder to get truckers on the road, Ron explained. New regulations force them to drive less while increased competition for last-mile services has made long-haul jobs less appealing. Then there are the COVID health concerns.
Drivers get paid to drive, Ron added, and the more transportation gets disrupted, the more drivers wait around at warehouses for loads that aren't ready or for shipping containers that have yet to be unloaded.
Uber Freight has one million drivers on its platform and uses its app to make every driver as efficient as possible. Instead of waiting, Uber tries to find shipments that are ready now and get them on the road as quickly as possible.
When Dutch Bros. Cools Down
When a beloved brand comes public with a bang, investors need to beware the hype, Cramer cautioned viewers. Case in point, Dutch Bros. (BROS) - Get Free Report, the upstart coffee chain that is way too hot to handle.
Dutch Bros. came public just a month ago. Shares priced at $23, opened at $32.50 and never looked back. Today, those shares are worth $53. The analysts also love Dutch Bros., with the stock currently receiving eight buy ratings and only one hold.
Cramer said going to a Dutch Bros. feels "like home," with great coffee and great service. The company is hugely popular in the Northwest, where it began, and it's a terrific regional to national growth story. The company only has 471 locations across the West. Management thinks over 4,000 locations are possible.
There's only one thing wrong with Dutch Bros., Cramer concluded, and that's the company's sky-high valuation. Shares currently trade for 120 times EBITDA, which was far too rich for Cramer to recommend. He said investors should only consider buying under $40 a share.
Investing in Community
Sure, Bank of America delivered stunning 12% revenue growth with loan losses at 15-year lows. The company's digital business also continues to soar. But what interested Cramer was on page six of the company's quarterly release, its commitment to racial equality and economic opportunity.
Before you roll your eyes, Cramer said it's a mistake to treat making the world a better place as a joke or an insignificant sideline. Business is the most powerful force for social change, and all of the things our government used to do, like job creations, affordable housing and promoting business ownership, well, those are the things that Bank of America is now doing.
For much of his lifetime, Cramer said businesses didn't seem to care about social change. But now, with the company minting money, here's a bank that's investing money into its communities even faster than it originally planned. That fact is worth acknowledging.
Here's what Cramer had to say about some of the stocks that callers offered up during the "Mad Money Lightning Round" Thursday evening:
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