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Jim Cramer told viewers of his "Mad Money" TV show Wednesday that the worldwide interest rate cuts today were simply too little, too late to help the markets.
Cramer said the rate cuts should help banks in the short term, but they are far too late and shallow to make any difference for stocks in 2008.
Throughout the financial crisis, he lamented,
Chairman Ben Bernanke has been "clueless" and so incredibly behind the curve that he should be fired.
Cramer compared today's markets to that of 2003, when then Fed Chairman Allen Greenspan took short-term interest rates to just 1%. Back then, he noted, there was no financial crisis of epic proportion, no credit crisis and no housing crisis. Yet today, Bernanke expects the markets to be fixed with just a mere 1/2-point cut.
Cramer acknowleged today's rate cuts represent a huge influx of cash and are a step in the right direction, but he said it would still take two years for the markets to recover. He called for several more rate cuts to completely remove the chance of a depression from the table.
In the near term, Cramer advised viewers to be cautious and stay in a capital preservation mode. He told them again to sell into any strength in the markets and to continue to raise cash throughout the remainder of 2008. "Put any money you might need for purchases in the next five years into a Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. insured savings account," he said.
Cramer: Focus on the Time Frame
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Hedge Fund Victim
Cramer checked in with
chairman and CEO John Colson, to see if this wind and energy play is still blowing strong in a crumbling market.
Cramer last recommended Quanta, which he owns for his charitable trust,
Action Alerts PLUS, on July 15 at $29 a share. Since then, the company's shares have fallen to under $19 a share, and that has Cramer worried.
Colson said Quanta has not been affected by the market meltdown, noting its business has been going strong. He said the recent wind tax credit extension passed by Congress will help Quanta, which builds and maintains power lines and switching stations for alternative energy projects.
Colson said Quanta's fundamentals remain strong, and he's seen no cutbacks or cancellations of any wind power projects. He reminded viewers that utilities build wind farms for their renewable and low-carbon benefits and those benefits are not affected by the daily price of oil.
He said the company expects to see $150 million in revenue this year from wind and renewable sources and strong growth going forward.
Cramer said Quanta is much better today than it was when he recommended it in July. He attributed the decline in the stock price to nothing more than relentless hedge fund selling, noting a huge 3.8 million share block that crossed the ticker on Tuesday.
Am I Diversified?
Cramer talked with callers and evaluated their portfolios to see if they have what it takes for today's tough market.
The first caller's portfolio included
Cramer congratulated the viewer for an excellent dividend-paying portfolio that'll likely make money while all others lose money.
The second caller's top holdings included
Penn Virginia Resources
Packaging Corp. of America
Cramer said this portfolio, too, was diversified and ready for a rough market.
The third caller had
as their top five stocks.
Cramer said this portfolio, while diversified, is losing money, and he's not a fan of Alcoa or Dow Chemical after their recent acquisition.
Cramer was bullish on
Nordic American Tanker
Deere & Co
He was bearish on
Allied Irish Banks
Goodyear Tire & Rubber
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At the time of publication, Cramer was long Quanta Services, Deere & Co.
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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