How did everything in the market turn so bad, so quickly? That was the question on Jim Cramer's mind, as he told hid Mad Money viewers Wednesday that all of the market's woes are manmade, and hopefully those who made them will see the error of their ways.
Cramer reiterated that the Federal Reserve's lock-step approach to interest rates, combined with President Trump's unrelenting trade war have left the markets in rough shape.
Fed chairman Jay Powell almost can't change his mind now, given the President's taunting, or risk losing the appearance of independence at the Fed.
Neither the Fed, nor China, appears ready to relent on their positions, which cause companies like iRobot (IRBT) - Get Report to plunge 12.3% after the company was left with no choice but to eat the cost of tariffs themselves rather than pass them onto customers.
Cramer said he fears the worst may not yet be over. Business is clearly slowing, which means earnings estimates must still come down. Even companies posting great earnings are not immune to the market's wrath, as we saw today with the action in Texas Instruments (TXN) - Get Report , down 8.2%. Investors need to be cautious, Cramer concluded, at least until those who are causing the problem change their minds.
Cramer and the AAP team are getting out of Cimarex (XEC) - Get Report , and buying more Schlumberger (SLB) - Get Report . 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 Earnings Season Reveals
Only when the tide goes out will you see who's swimming naked, a wise investor once said. That's certainly been the case this earnings season, as we've seen a ton of companies doing well at the expense of their rivals.
Today AT&T (T) - Get Report missed estimates by four cents a share, while earlier this week, Verizon (VZ) - Get Report shined. Cramer said AT&T's 6.6% yield is now disturbing, but Verizon should be bought on any weakness.
In the drug sector, Merck (MRK) - Get Report came in with weak results, while Eli Lilly (LLY) - Get Report continued to perform. Boeing (BA) - Get Report was amazing. General Dynamics (GD) - Get Report , only OK. Procter & Gamble (PG) - Get Report is taking market share, while Kimberly-Clark (KMB) - Get Report is losing it in spades. Even Cramer favorite, Illinois Toolworks (ITW) - Get Report , surprised with disappointing results that no one saw coming.
Over on Real Money, Cramer says this earnings season is showing us the best and the worst performers in each sector. Get more of his insights with a free trial subscription to Real Money.
You Have Questions, Cramer Has Answers
Cramer again opened the phone lines to take calls from Cramerica after another difficult day for investors. When a younger investor with a portfolio heavy in tech stocks asked what he should do next, Cramer told him not to fear, as he still has many years of investing ahead. He advised buying some index funds to stay diversified, but said not to sell everything out of fear.
Another caller asked why the stock of Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) - Get Report fell so hard. Cramer said even though PCs and the data center were strong, the company's graphics business slowed and that was enough to send investors running.
The final caller asked how he can invest in a world where machines and algorithms rule the day. Cramer said there is definitely too much program trading out there, but good stocks can still cut through the noise and prevail.
Going to the Net
In a special interview, Cramer sat down with serial entrepreneur and Philadelphia native Michael Rubin, the current owner of the Philadelphia 76ers basketball team, among other ventures.
Rubin said he just got back from China, where he witnessed 45 million Chinese basketball fans tune in for a pre-season game. He said there's a massive opportunity for basketball in China and he's very excited to be a part of it.
Rubin is also the executive chairman of Fanatics, an online sports apparel retailer. He said in a world where Amazon (AMZN) - Get Report and Alibaba (BABA) - Get Report control the commerce world, the only way to survive is to differentiate and that's exactly what Fanatics does. The company designs, manufactures and sells their wares direct to consumers.
Executive Decision: Constellation Brands
In his second "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer checked back in with Rob Sands and Bill Newlands from Constellation Brands (STZ) - Get Report . Sands recently announced he's retiring from the company in March, with Newlands taking the helm, an event Cramer deemed "the end of an era" for the makers of Corona and Modelo, among many others.
Sands said that succession planning is one of the most important things you can do as CEO and after 11 years, it felt like time to retire from a position of strength. He will remain involved with Constellation as the company's chairman.
Newlands responded to reports that Constellation may be selling some of its wine brands by saying that they still believe strongly in the wine business, but they may consider strategic alternatives for some of their lesser brands as they focus on their stronger brands.
Turning to Constellation's investment in Canopy Growth Corp (CGC) - Get Report , Sands said that demand for cannabis in Canada after legalization has been better than expected and he feels it's only the beginning of what the two companies can accomplish together.
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At the time of publication, Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS had a position in SLB, AMZN.