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Morning Bell With Jim Cramer: Earnings Movers, Nucor and Cleveland-Cliffs

TheStreet's Jim Cramer explains what's driving the market and expresses his frustration over Nucor.

Stock futures traded higher Friday as earnings optimism lifted the three benchmark U.S. indexes to near all-time highs.

TheStreet's Jim Cramer took a look at some of the issues that have been driving the market higher lately.

Cramer on Earnings Season: Market Driver

When asked the most important factor driving the broader markets during his monthly Action Alerts PLUS call, Cramer said it was earnings season.

"There are 12 weeks a year where companies drive what's happening, and that's earnings season and we're in one of those 12 weeks," Cramer said.

Cramer said that markets could rally when the 10-year Treasury yield reverses and interest rates head higher because earnings are "so good."

"Right now, we're following the companies," Cramer said. "There are 40 weeks where they don't matter and it's just the 10-year, but right now, it's the companies themselves." 

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Cramer on Nucor: I've Never Seen a Cycle Like This Before

Cramer also talked about Nucor  (NUE) - Get Nucor Corporation Report, "saying that there's no finer manufacturer - not steelmaker, manufacturer-- in this country." 

"It's got a history of going up for multiple years when the cycle begins, and the cycle just began," he said. "And it has a rock-solid balance sheet."

Cramer expressed his frustration at the lack of excitement over Nucor. 

"I believe that the market is wrong," he said. "History says that price increases stick in the steel world, as long as there's no new capacity being added, and none is. Capacity is still coming out. That's right. They’re still taking capacity out."

Cramer pointed to Cleveland-Cliffs  (CLF) - Get Cleveland-Cliffs Inc Report, which posted softer-than-expected second-quarter earnings. He said that he "shorted the hell out of Bethlehem Steel ... and Old Bessie filed for bankruptcy two years later."

"But Nucor is not Bessie Steel," he said. "It is a growth manufacturer with a fantastic balance sheet. And that's why I'm steamed. I see trades - as it goes lower, I am more confident that it will be a winner."

Cramer added, "I hope it goes lower so we can buy much more.