This is going to be a tough weekend for investors, Jim Cramer told his Mad Money viewers Friday. All eyes remain on the coronavirus, and until the epidemic is under control, even the best corporate earnings won't be enough to lift stocks. Cramer said it's still not too late to raise cash so you'll be able to buy when the bottom finally comes.
Next, on Tuesday we hear from Clorox (CLX) - Get Report, a company that makes a product that kills almost everything -- bleach. We also hear from a company you'll want to avoid, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines (RCL) - Get Report. Investors will also learn more about China from Emerson Electric (EMR) - Get Report and Walt Disney Co. (DIS) - Get Report, where the focus will likely be on theme park attendance.
Wednesday brings earnings from Merck (MRK) - Get Report and Grubhub (GRUB) - Get Report, both of which Cramer was bullish on, but also from General Motors (GM) - Get Report and YUM China (YUMC) - Get Report, which will likely be in the middle of the coronavirus blast zone.
Then on Thursday we hear from a Cramer favorite, Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY) - Get Report, which should update on its Celgene (CELG) - Get Report acquisition. Estee Lauder (EL) - Get Report will also report earnings and Cramer expects sluggish sales.
Cramer and the AAP team are looking at everything from earnings and tariffs to the Federal Reserve. Find out what they're telling their investment club members and get in on the conversation with a free trial subscription to Action Alerts Plus.
The Defensive Team
On days like Friday, your portfolio needs a good defense, Cramer told viewers. That's why he reiterated that Clorox is the perfect stock to own when disinfecting and killing viruses are top of mind. He also recommended a food stock like JM Smucker (SJM) - Get Report. Smucker isn't levered to China, and after a few less-than-stellar quarters, Smucker is now playing catch-up to the rest of the market.
Just like in football, your portfolio can also benefit from some "special teams" stocks that can save the day when you're in a bind. Cramer recommended stocks like Square (SQ) - Get Report, which has been inconsistent as of late, but still has a lot of potential for growth. He also suggested Evergy (EVRG) - Get Report as another growth stock that could do well when times get tough due to the coronavirus.
On Real Money, Cramer keys in on the companies and CEOs he knows best. Get more of his insights with a free trial subscription to Real Money.
Too Many Wildcards
There are too many wildcards in the stock market right now, Cramer admitted to viewers. That means it's not safe to buy until the markets get more oversold and we have all of the facts.
The coronavirus is one of the biggest wildcards at the moment. It's clear the Chinese initially covered up the outbreak and have mishandled its spread to other countries. But U.S. officials continual to praise China for their handling of the outbreak. Given the virus's two-week incubation period, we simply don't know how many people could be infected.
Cramer reminded viewers that panic is never a strategy, but until we know how widespread this disease will get and whether we're going to see travel bans and other repercussions, it's too early to buy into declines like today.
The only safe bets are stocks like food, soft drinks, snacks and anything that allows people to stay at home and wait out the virus.
Welcome to the Club
There's a new member of the trillion dollar market-cap club, and Cramer welcomed Amazon (AMZN) - Get Report to the elite list that includes Apple (AAPL) - Get Report, Microsoft (MSFT) - Get Report and -- formerly --Alphabet.
Cramer called Amazon is a treasure, saying it deserves to be a lot higher than the higher than the 7.3% shares rallied Friday. The company announced it now has 150 million Prime members and its advertising and web services business continues to be on fire.
But while Amazon made the list, Cramer couldn't help but notice the Exxon Mobil (XOM) - Get Report, the largest company in the world three years ago, continues to wither in value. Fossil fuels are rapidly becoming the new tobacco on Wall Street, Cramer said, and money managers are selling them regardless of the outlook.
Cramer Does His Homework
The stock caught fire in November and rallied hard through January before seeing a sharp correction. Inseego is an intriguing company, Cramer said, and it has lots of opportunities. But at the moment, it's reliant on its biggest customer, Verizon (VZ) - Get Report, which makes it too risky until some of those other opportunities materialize.
Here's what Jim Cramer had to say about some of the stocks that callers offered up during the Mad Money Lightning Round Friday evening:
Introducing TheStreet Courses: Financial titans Jim Cramer and Robert Powell are bringing their market savvy and investing strategies to you. Learn how to create tax-efficient income, avoid top mistakes, reduce risk and more. With our courses, you will have the tools and knowledge needed to achieve your financial goals. Learn more about TheStreet Courses on investing and personal finance here.
Search Jim Cramer's "Mad Money" trading recommendations using our exclusive "Mad Money" Stock Screener.
To watch replays of Cramer's video segments, visit the Mad Money page on CNBC.
To sign up for Jim Cramer's free Booyah! newsletter with all of his latest articles and videos please click here.
At the time of publication, Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS had a position in GOOGL, CLX, DIS, BMY, ABBV, AMZN, AAPL, MSFT.