Sometimes, the consensus on Wall Street just gets it wrong, Jim Cramer told his Mad Money viewers Thursday. Right now, many money managers think there are too many bears in the market. In reality, we might have too many bulls.
For the bulls, there's nothing to fear. There's a vaccine on the way and soon COVID will be a distant memory and the economy will be booming. But Cramer said that line of thinking might be a little too optimistic.
Right now, we're seeing exponential growth in COVID cases. Forget about hot spots, the entire country is quickly becoming a hot spot and our hospitals are nearing capacity in many areas. Like it or not, raging pandemics are not good for the economy, Cramer said. Even without mandatory lockdowns, when cases spike, people will self-isolate and they'll spend less while they do.
Without additional stimulus, travel and leisure will be put under more strain, as will restaurants and retail. Commercial real estate and real estate REITs will also suffer, as will consumers who can't pay the rent to less forgiving landlords that are desperate for cash. The ripple effect of these concerns will affect everyone, from banks to consumer goods.
That's why Cramer continued to urge caution. He told viewers to take some gains, raise cash and remain vigilant. We're in for a long winter.
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Executive Decision: Ford Motor
Farley said the goal at Ford is to modernize their operations and stay profitable in every region of the globe. One of the ways they're doing that is by investing in their commercial business, where Ford commands a 50% market share.
Ford just introduced a new electrified version of their Transit cargo van, which joins Ford's coming electric F150 pickup truck. Farley said Ford will be electrifying job sites across the country with vehicles that offer great range, power and performance with a cost of ownership that's a fraction of their gasoline versions.
Farley added that while technology, connectivity and electrification is important, what's really driving customers to Ford are products that matter, like the Mustang, Bronco and F150 pickup.
When asked how COVID is reshaping their business, Farley noted that it's created a strong demand for used cars and resale values remain high across the country.
Executive Decision: Sysco
In another "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer spoke with Kevin Hourican, CEO of Sysco (SYY) - Get Report, the foodservice provider that's been under fire as many restaurants, schools and entertainment venues remain shuttered.
Hourican said Sysco remains committed to helping small businesses survive, which is why starting today, Sysco has eliminated their order minimums for all customers. He said the removal of minimums will help smaller restaurants better manage their cash and food supplies to deal with rapidly changing conditions.
Restaurants have been more resilient than they thought, Hourican said, but Sysco is still stepping up with help with payment terms, order minimums or whatever their customers need to survive. His company has a full line of tents, domes and space heaters to help restaurants continue with outdoor seating for as long as possible.
One bright spot for Sysco has been quick-service restaurants, Hourican said, which continue to operate with their drive-throughs. Hardest hit are the leisure and entertainment venues, many of which still aren't allowed to operate. Hourican noted that local restrictions are the biggest factor affecting small businesses.
Despite a 20% drop in sales, Hourican said Sysco continues to generate strong free cash flow.
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Executive Decision: Alteryx
For his final "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer checked in Dean Stoecker and Mark Anderson, the outgoing and incoming CEO of data analytics company Alteryx (AYX) - Get Report. Shares of Alteryx have been under pressure in recent weeks as the company continued its cautious guidance for the remainder of 2020.
Anderson explained that while he loved the mission of keeping companies safe at his former company, Palo Alto Networks (PANW) - Get Report, he found the mission of Alteryx equally compelling. Companies need to get control of their data, he said, and those who are making data-driven decisions are separating themselves from the pack.
Stoecker added that Alteryx allows analysts to do more meaningful work. No longer do they need to crunch the data on their own. Alteryx allows everyone at a company to discover insights and make their company more profitable.
When asked about the pandemic, Anderson said it has affected everyone, but companies realize the need for analytics and in many cases, they can even monetize their data in new ways to help them capitalize on changing conditions.
Stocks to Buy off 'Singles Day'
In his "No Huddle Offense" segment, Cramer reminded viewers that when it comes to picking stocks, what matters is the future, not the past. So when you hear about record sales during China's Singles Day, investors need to be looking at companies that have big sales in China.
Cramer said the two big winners in China are Nike (NKE) - Get Report, which gets 18% of its sales from China, and Estee Lauder (EL) - Get Report, the skincare and makeup company that's huge in a country where everyone wears masks.
Here's what Cramer had to say about some of the stocks that callers offered up during the Mad Money Lightning Round Thursday evening:
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At the time of publication, Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS had a position in CRM, COST.