Things are starting to look pretty bad out there, Jim Cramer admitted to his Mad Money viewers Thursday, after the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost another 660 points. On this day, all eyes were on Apple (AAPL) - Get Report , the latest market casualty.
Cramer said Apple's pre-announcement was about one thing -- a slowdown in China. But we're still really not sure whether that slowdown is being caused by a rapidly weakening Chinese economy or by the Chinese discouraging consumers from buying American phones during a trade war.
Meanwhile, here at home, the Federal Reserve seems to have its eyes set on one thing: job losses. Cramer said the Fed won't be happy until they see people being laid off. The Fed's decision to switch from three rate hikes to just two proves their ability to ignore just about every other economic indicator, Cramer added.
So where should investors be putting their money? Cramer said only the defensive stocks are working, stocks like Clorox (CLX) - Get Report , PepsiCo (PEP) - Get Report and Coca-Cola (KO) - Get Report . Investors should avoid the airlines, he said, as declining oil prices are being offset by the slowing economy. The economy is also taking its toll on the travel and leisure sector.
What matters after today is earnings and how bad the shortfalls will be, Cramer said. From the looks of Apple? Pretty bad. And that's worth considering as we go into the season that's not so jolly anyway.
Cramer and the AAP team say Apple's (AAPL) - Get Report important, but we shouldn't lose sight of the other news. 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.
What can investors learn from last quarter's biggest winners and losers? Cramer dove into the lists to find out.
He started with the biggest winners, led by Red Hat (RHT) - Get Report , which soared 30% after receiving a takeover bid from IBM (IBM) - Get Report . Next was Newmont Mining (NEM) - Get Report , up 14.7% for the quarter. Cramer said he still likes Randgold (GOLD) - Get Report and Barrick Gold (ABX) .
Next on the list were Starbucks (SBUX) - Get Report and CME Group (CME) - Get Report . Cramer said he's a fan of the turnaround at Starbucks and isn't worried about the company's exposure to China. He was also a fan of CME Group, as futures trading will only increase as market volatility increases.
Then there's Realty Income (O) - Get Report , an attractive dividend stock that pays more than U.S. Treasuries. Followed by Church & Dwight (CHD) - Get Report , the consumer goods maker that's benefiting from lower commodity costs.
Over on Real Money, Cramer says sometimes, you just have to let it rain. Get more of his insights with a free trial subscription to Real Money.
What were the biggest losers of last quarter? That list was topped by Nvidia (NVDA) - Get Report , the chipmaker that fell 52%. Cramer said he thinks the backlog will be solved this quarter, making this stock a buy. He was also bullish on Newfield Exploration (NFX) and PG&E (PGE) , numbers two and three on the worst performer list.
The same could not be said for Coty (COTY) - Get Report , Align Technologies (ALGN) - Get Report , Nektar Therapeutics (NKTR) - Get Report and Perrigo (PRGO) - Get Report , all of which also made the list. Cramer was upbeat on Marathon Petroleum (MRO) - Get Report and Schlumberger (SLB) - Get Report , as he felt oil is bottoming.
Finally, Cramer said that he would be a buyer of Activision Blizzard (ATVI) - Get Report and Take-Two Interactive (TTWO) - Get Report , but would avoid Tiffany (TIF) - Get Report and United Rentals (URI) - Get Report .
Executive Decision: AMN Healthcare Services
Salka said our aging population continues to drive the healthcare industry, creating continued shortages for nurses, physicians and even leadership positions. People are everything in healthcare, she said, and AMN helps providers have the right people at the right times, while controlling costs.
For many healthcare providers, staffing represents 50% of their costs, which is why it's so important to utilize every doctor and nurse to their fullest potential.
AMN is very active in the communities they serve, promoting volunteerism, diversity and equality for themselves and the providers they serve.
Consolidation in the Drug Sector
In his "No-Huddle Offense" segment, Cramer proclaimed the drug consolidation has begun, after today's announcement that Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY) - Get Report is buying Celgene (CELG) - Get Report for $74 billion.
Cramer surmised that after years of failed attempts at diversifications, these two companies are just what the other needed. He expects Abbvie (ABBV) - Get Report , among others, to also feel the need the merge. That's why Cramer will be attending the annual JPMorgan Chase (JPM) - Get Report Healthcare conference next week, to learn more about what the best in biotech are thinking.
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At the time of publication, Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS had a position in AAPL, SLB, UNH.