No one ever made a dime panicking, Jim Cramer reminded his Mad Money viewers Thursday. During wild weeks like this, Cramer said it helps to remember the words of Warren Buffett -- who famously said the time to be fearful is when others are greedy and the time to be greedy is when others are fearful.
Buffett appeared on CNBC just two weeks ago with similar sentiments, Cramer recalled. And while the markets have plunge 10% since Buffett's most recent comments, his ethos still applies. You will never time the bottom perfectly. But history has told us that the long-term trend for stocks is higher, even if they may be markedly lower a day, a week, or a few months from now.
Buffett made similar comments in 2008 at the beginning of the financial crisis. The Dow Jones Industrial Average sank 23% in the weeks that followed. But since the eventually bottom, Wall Street has seen a remarkable bull market, just like it will see again after our current crises pass.
Our financial system is a lot stronger now than in it was in 2008, Cramer said, and he has confidence that our scientific community will eventually have a vaccine for this latest coronavirus. "Don't bet against our scientists," he urged.
Cramer's bottom line was to buy on the way down, buy gradually and -- above all else -- don't try and time the bottom.
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.
Off-price or Online
If you want to win in retail these days, you need to either be off-price or online, Cramer told viewers. Nowhere was that more evident that in this quarter's retail earnings.
Today, the off-price retailer Burlington Stores (BURL) - Get Report delivered same-store sales up 3.9% when analysts were only looking for 2.9%. Meanwhile, rival Kohl's Stores (KSS) - Get Report, which really isn't off-price nor online, delivered only inline earnings that sent shares plunging 8.2% by the close. Department stores like Macy's (M) - Get Report continue to struggle, while drugstores like CVS Health (CVS) - Get Report clearly have already reinvented themselves.
Cramer said he continues to worry about Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) - Get Report, but is worrying less about Kroger (KR) - Get Report these days. He still likes Costco (COST) - Get Report and Dollar General (DG) - Get Report, and still has a wait-and-see attitude toward Dollar Tree (DLTR) - Get Report, which has yet to complete its turnaround.
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.
Executive Decision: Sangamo Therapeutics
For his "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer spoke with Sandy Macrae, president and CEO of Sangamo Therapeutics (SGMO) - Get Report, the biotech with shares that rose 4.9% after the company announced a new partnership with Biogen (BIIB) - Get Report.
Macrae explained that while Sangamo has been around for 25 years, they still operate like a startup, discovering new ways to interact with genes to fight disease. He explained that the partnership with Biogen allows Sangamo to perform early-stage research on a number of genes that Biogen is interested in and Biogen will then help to develop and commercialize the drugs that come from that research. The deal validates everything Sangamo has been doing, Macrae said, and Biogen is very excited about the prospects.
Sangamo is currently working on treatments for both Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease, and Macrae said their drugs, if they work as expected, could be game-changers.
When asked about the coronavirus, Macrae said that while Sangamo's technology isn't suited to combat this virus, the industry is using all of its technological resources to develop treatments that can help curb the spread of the virus as well as treat those afflicted with it.
Executive Decision: Generac Holdings
In his second "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer also sat down with Aaron Jagdfeld, chairman and CEO of Generac Holdings (GNRC) - Get Report, the generator manufacturer which hit a fresh all-time high.
Jagdfeld said the $4 trillion energy industry will be disrupted over the next decade by the coming advances in distributed, renewable and energy storage solutions. No longer will power just come to you from your utility, he explained. Generac has made two acquisitions in this space, investing $100 million, and now offers energy storage solutions that let homeowners generate, store and use their own power on their own terms.
If you have a rooftop, you can be part of the energy solution, Jagdfeld explained. Generac is competing with vendors like Tesla (TSLA) - Get Report, which also offers solar solutions paired with energy storage systems. Jagdfeld said he sees the energy storage business to be just as big as their legacy generator business.
Executive Decision: American Electric Power
Akins said that American Electric Power remains a strong, consistent company that continues to invest in making the electric system better. He said as our economy continues to electrify, they're seeing growth across the board from transportation and manufacturing, to oil and gas, hospitals, education and more.
When asked whether demand would fall if everyone worked from home due to the coronavirus, Akins said that since margins are higher for residential usage, they'd actually do better if that were to happen.
American Electric Power remains committed to the environment and new technologies, Akins added. He said they continue to invest in micro-grids and energy storage projects as well as renewable projects including wind and solar.
Here's what Jim Cramer had to say about some of the stocks that callers offered up during the Mad Money Lightning Round Thursday evening:
United Technologies : "The numbers are probably too high and this is going to be a rocky situation."
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 CVS, COST.