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You're not alone in trying to fathom what's going on in this crazy market, Jim Cramer told his Mad Money viewers Monday. Too often, the facts simply don't fit with the story.
Why were the markets down Friday after news broke regarding the renewed investigation into emails potentially tied to Hillary Clinton? Cramer said it's because the stock market hates uncertainty for one thing, but then stocks rebounded because a landslide for the Democrats could lead to increased regulation for the banks and many other sectors.
Then there's today's puzzling rise in consumer purchasing. Cramer said that only Apple(AAPL) - Get Report , an Action Alerts PLUS holding, and Amazon.com(AMZN) - Get Report saw gains in September, while just today both Home Depot(HD) - Get Report and Lowes(LOW) - Get Report received downgrades from a lack of consumer spending.
Another confusing case is that of mergers and acquisitions. The government is blocking more deals than ever before, yet there are more deals being proposed than ever before. In just the past week, General Electric(GE) - Get Report , CenturyLink(CTL) - Get Report , Qualcomm(QCOM) - Get Report and AT&T(T) - Get Report have all announced monster deals. Cramer said the answer here is easy: Companies are taking advantage of cheap money to merge first and ask questions later.
Finally, Cramer commented on the proposed OPEC deal to curb production, the one that history tells us never materializes. He called this a rumor that's still based on nothing.
All of these issues make investing nearly impossible, Cramer concluded, which is why he recommends investing in high-quality companies, but with a long-term view.
Executive Decision: Newell Brands
For his "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer spoke with Michael Polk, CEO of Newell Brands(NWL) - Get Report , the Action Alerts Plus holding that just posted a mixed quarter with a five-cents-a-share earnings beat on weaker-than-expected revenue.
Polk said that he's proud of Newell's most recent results, which include the company's recent acquisition of Jarden. He said despite the tremendous change in Newell's portfolio of brands and the reorganization of the company, they were still able to deliver solid growth.
In the end, Polk said, Newell remains a household goods company, one that's focused on making millions of consumers' lives better every day. They continue to focus on areas like baby products and writing, as well as with their former namesake, Rubbermaid, where innovative products continue to keep food fresh longer.
Integrating all of Jarden's great brands will take longer than 90 days, Polk added. Cramer said that as he looks at the long-term prospects of the combined company, he shares that sentiment.
Beware the Fickle Retail Sector
We're used to seeing price wars in some sectors of our economy, Cramer told viewers, but when competition rears its head in areas we don't expect, look out below.
That's how a great company like Nike(NKE) - Get Report was able to receive a rare analyst downgrade today, as the company has come under attack from not only rival Under Armour(UA) - Get Report , but also from Adidas. Cramer said he still likes Foot Locker(FL) - Get Report and to a lesser extent Dick's Sporting Goods(DKS) - Get Report , but cautioned investors from venturing into the fickle retail sector.
This quarter also saw unlikely competition in health care, with AmerisourceBergen(ABC) - Get Report plunging the drug wholesalers into a price war, while Zimmer Biomet(ZBH) - Get Report fell 14% on competition for joint replacements.
Where there is competition, there are falling gross margins, Cramer concluded, and that often leads to falling stock prices as well.
Executive Decision: Arconic
In his second "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer spoke with Klaus Kleinfeld, chairman and CEO of Arconic, the engineered products spinoff of Alcoa(AA) - Get Report that is scheduled to begin trading as an independent company Tuesday under the ticker ARNC.
Kleinfeld said that Arconic will remain primarily an aerospace company, working with all of the leading manufacturers on new products and innovations. Nearly 90% of all the aluminum flying today was invented by Alcoa, Kleinfeld noted. Arconic will also extend beyond aluminum into titanium, nickel and composites as well.
When asked about the longevity of the aerospace bull market, Kleinfeld said that manufacturers are seeing order books extend out nine years thanks to new innovations and increased energy efficiency of new planes.
In the Lightning Round, Cramer was bullish on RPM International(RPM) - Get Report , Nutanix(NTNX) - Get Report , Intuit(INTU) - Get Report , Activision Blizzard(ATVI) - Get Report , Celgene(CELG) - Get Report , HP(HPQ) - Get Report and Merck(MRK) - Get Report .
Cramer was bearish on Amgen(AMGN) - Get Report , H&R Block(HRB) - Get Report , SunPower(SPWR) - Get Report , GNC Holdings(GNC) - Get Report , Clovis Oncology(CLVS) - Get Report , Reynolds American (RAI) and Twilio(TWLO) - Get Report .
Executive Decision: Brunswick
Schwabero said that Brunswick is often compared to different industries, but currently his company derives 50% of sales from marine products and another 19% from fitness products. Consumers want recreation and family time, Schwabero said, and boating is the perfect activity for that. They also want to live long, healthy lives, he said, and Brunswick has products for that as well.
Schwabero touted Brunswick's purchase of fitness equipment maker Cybex for $195 million by saying the combination of the No. 1 and No. 5 player in the space affords them plenty of opportunities for the future. Brunswick has always been a premium provider of things like treadmills for commercial applications, and Cybex complements that portfolio.
When asked about the domestic and international economies, Schwabero said that some areas like Brazil and the Middle East remain weak, but here at home, he expects to see things pick up once the uncertainty of the election has passed.
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the time of publication, Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS had a position in AAPL, GE, NWL and AA.