Investors should like a market that embraces value, Jim Cramer told his Mad Money viewers Thursday. Fortunately, that's exactly the market we have, as investors circled back to snap up the stocks that have been left behind.
Retail was the first group to be reignited today, as positive same-store sales from Target (TGT) - Get Free Report sent shares up 4.8%. Not everything will fall victim to Amazon (AMZN) - Get Free Report , Cramer said. He still likes Home Depot (HD) - Get Free Report for gardening, Walmart (WMT) - Get Free Report for its turnaround and TJX Companies (TJX) - Get Free Report because it buys distressed merchandise from all the other retailers.
The oils were the second group to rally today, as crude rose above $46 a barrel. Cramer liked Apache (APA) - Get Free Report , an Action Alerts PLUS holding, even though he admitted he's been wrong so far on the stock. Chevron (CVX) - Get Free Report and Occidental Petroleum (OXY) - Get Free Report also topped his buy list.
Finally, there are the auto-related stocks, with General Motors (GM) - Get Free Report leading the way, up 1% on the day. GM trades at a ridiculous 6 times earnings, Cramer said and that will spur analysts to upgrade the group over the next 72 hours.
On Real Money, Cramer says he likes a market that embraces value even without mergers and acquisitions. Get his insights on how to play this market with a free trial subscription to Real Money.
Let's Get to Work
After sitting down with Herman Miller (MLHR) - Get Free Report CEO Brian Walker last night, Cramer decided to take a look at the other big player in the office furniture space, Steelcase (SCS) - Get Free Report , and see which company is the one to own.
On the surface, both of these companies should be doing well with an improving economy, but in reality, one is doing far better than the other.
Steelcase delivered sales that were down 1% in 2016, while Herman Miller saw a 5.6% gain. Herman Miller is expected to see its earnings accelerate this year, while forecasts see the opposite for Steelcase. Cramer noted that both companies are valued similarly, with Steelcase at 13.6 times earnings and Herman Miller at 14.6 times.
After Steelcase delivered a small miss on earnings last quarter, Cramer said, he cannot recommend it. He's sticking with Herman Miller, which last posted a nine-cents-a-share earnings beat with robust guidance for the rest of 2017.
After today's surprising pre-announcement of positive same-store sales, is it finally time to buy Target? Cramer said he's encouraged by the company's news that food and fashion are growing, but the announcement itself raises other issues.
When it comes to retail, forecasting is everything. If you do it correctly, you have just the right amount of what customers want. Do it incorrectly, and it's markdown city. So why then did Target get it wrong, forecasting lower sales only to change their mind now?
In a world where Amazon uses artificial intelligence to know what customers want before they do, you cannot afford to get your forecasts wrong.
Why are shares of Macy's (M) - Get Free Report , Nordstrom (JWN) - Get Free Report and Kohl's (KSS) - Get Free Report so low? Because we simply don't know whether 2018 will be better or worse than 2017.
That's why Cramer said that today's news, while positive, only makes the retailers a buy for a trade and not for an investment.
Sometimes a stock comes down so hard and so fast, it takes your breath away, Cramer told viewers. That has certainly been the case with Alder BioPharmaceuticals (ALDR) - Get Free Report , which has lost 45% of it's value over the past three months.
Cramer said he's been dead wrong on this development-stage biotech, recommending it multiple times over the past few years. The company only has one drug in its near-term pipeline, a genetically engineered antibody treatment for migraines. Currently, there's only one treatment for migraines available and that's Allergan's (AGN) - Get Free Report Botox.
But when Alder reported the Phase III results on June 27, the stock got crushed, despite the trial meeting all of its goals. The problem? The results were widely expected and now investors are worried that rivals may beat the company to market.
Cramer said while he's been wrong thus far on Alder, he only cares where a stock is going, not where its been. In this case, the fears have been overblown to the downside and he'd be a buyer at these levels.
But, he warned, development stage biotechs are for speculation only, as we've just seen how risky these stocks can be.
In the Lightning Round, Cramer was bullish on Xilinx (XLNX) - Get Free Report , Arena Pharmaceuticals (ARNA) - Get Free Report , Magellan Midstream Partners (MMP) - Get Free Report , Altria (MO) - Get Free Report , Bank of Montreal (BMO) - Get Free Report and IHS Markit (INFO) - Get Free Report .
Cramer and the AAP team are telling their investment club members what they will be looking for when Citigroup (C) - Get Free Report and Wells Fargo (WFC) - Get Free Report report earnings. Get in on the conversation with a free trial subscription to Action Alerts PLUS.
Am I Diversified?
In the "Am I Diversified" segment, Cramer spoke with callers and responded to tweets sent via Twitter to @JimCramer to see if investors' portfolios have what it takes for today's markets.
The first portfolio included Idexx Pharmaceuticals (IDXX) - Get Free Report , Visa (V) - Get Free Report , MGM Growth Properties (MGP) - Get Free Report , Activision Blizzard (ATVI) - Get Free Report and Mercadolibre (MELI) - Get Free Report .
Cramer said he'd bless this portfolio as diversified, but the stocks are all expensive.
The second portfolio's top holdings included Salesforce.com (CRM) - Get Free Report , Nike (NKE) - Get Free Report , Walt Disney (DIS) - Get Free Report , Camping World (CWH) - Get Free Report and Activision Blizzard (ATVI) - Get Free Report .
Cramer said this portfolio can't have two entertainment companies and he suggested selling Disney to swap in a healthcare stock.
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At the time of publication, Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS had positions in C, WFC, TJX, APA, AGN, MMP.