The headwinds of Washington may be too much for the tailwind of earnings next week, Jim Cramer told his Mad Money viewers Friday after another choppy session on Wall Street. President Trump could take action on Robert Mueller, Syria or China at any moment, and that has investors very worried.
On Tuesday, he'll be tuning into UnitedHealth Group (UNH - Get Report) , Goldman Sachs (GS - Get Report) , Johnson & Johnson (JNJ - Get Report) and IBM (IBM - Get Report) . Cramer had great things to say about all four companies.
The positivity continues for Wednesday, when we'll hear from Morgan Stanley (MS - Get Report) , a stock Cramer said he'd buy, along with American Express (AXP - Get Report) and United Rentals (URI - Get Report) , a stock Cramer featured on Thursday's show. Also on Wednesday, Alcoa (AA - Get Report) will report earnings and let us know the true impact of Chinese tariffs.
On Thursday, Cramer said he'll be listening what PPG (PPG - Get Report) has to say about commodity price inflation, while E-Trade Financial (ETFC - Get Report) will provide insight into the state of the individual investor.
Finally on Friday, General Electric (GE - Get Report) will provide an update on its turnaround efforts, while Honeywell (HON - Get Report) will update investors on its breakup plans. Cramer said he'll also be watching Procter & Gamble (PG - Get Report) and Schlumberger (SLB - Get Report) , two more long-time favorites.
Over on Real Money, Cramer says even the best of earnings can't forestall an angry president. Get more of his insights with a free trial subscription to Real Money.
Cramer and the AAP team say Citigroup (C - Get Report) shows steady progress in first-quarter earnings 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.
There Are Easier Ways to Make Money
Some stocks are just too hard to take a position in, Cramer told viewers, as he dove into the stock of MiMedx (MDXG) , a small-cap biopharma that converts donated placental tissue into skin grafts that help in the recovery for a host of ailments.
Cramer explained that shares of MiMedx plunged from $15 a share to just $6 after news broke accusing the company of stuffing their distribution channel with product and overcharging their customers, possibly inflating sales by 70%.
Shortly thereafter, short sellers piled into the stock making a slew of accusations in the ultimate game of "he said, she said" that resulted in the company catching the eye of the SEC and department of Justice, both of which are now investigating.
Cramer said it's clear that one of these two sides is lying, but right now we don't know which side that is. That makes the stock too risky to invest in. Investors might double their money if they guess correctly, but they could just as easily lose it all.
The stock of MiMedx is a case study in when to walk away, Cramer concluded, as there are far easier ways to make money in the stock market.
Scouting Cybersecurity Opportunities
Cybersecurity remains red hot, after another three high-profile attacks, at Under Armour (UAA - Get Report) , Boeing (BA - Get Report) and Hudson's Bay, the parent of Saks. But while many investors know of the big boys like Palo Alto Networks (PANW - Get Report) , Fortinet (FTNT - Get Report) and Proofpoint (PFPT - Get Report) , Cramer dove into three smaller cybersecurity names to see if they're worth investing in.
Forescout Technologies (FSCT - Get Report) debuted in October and has seen shares run from $22 to $33 in the months that followed. The company is gaining ground in the government market and continuing to deliver strong growth.
Okta (OKTA - Get Report) helps companies manage identity with two-factor authentication and has seen its shares rocket up 58% so far in 2018. Then there's Zscaler (ZS - Get Report) , which offers a suite of security applications for cloud providers.
Cramer said that while the story at all three of these companies is compelling, Okta trades at nine times sales, while Zscaler trades at a whopping 24 times sales, making them too expensive to recommend. Forescout, however, has a more reasonable valuation at just four times sales. Cramer cautioned that the lockup period for Forescout expires in just two weeks, at which time there will likely be a ton of selling. He advised picking up shares after the selling subsides.
Am I Diversified?
In the "Am I Diversified" segment, Cramer spoke with callers and responded to tweets sent via Twitter to @JimCramer to see if investors' portfolios have what it takes for today's markets.
The first portfolio included Domino's Pizza (DPZ - Get Report) , UnitedHealth Group (UNH - Get Report) , Micron Technology (MU - Get Report) , Alphabet (GOOGL - Get Report) and Netflix (NFLX - Get Report) .
Cramer said he'd bless this portfolio as properly diversified.
Cramer said this portfolio was "perfectly" diversified.
The third caller had Boeing (BA - Get Report) , Helmerich & Payne (HP - Get Report) , Fiat Chrysler (FCAU - Get Report) , LAM Research (LRCX - Get Report) and Steel Dynamics (STLD - Get Report) as her top five stocks.
Cramer examined this mix of stocks and declared it, too, was properly diversified.
In the Lightning Round, Cramer was bullish on FMC Corp (FMC - Get Report) , Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust (PEI - Get Report) , Cisco Systems (CSCO - Get Report) , HP (HPQ - Get Report) , BB&T Bank (BBT - Get Report) and HCA Holdings (HCA - Get Report) .
In his "No-Huddle Offense" segment, Cramer proclaimed that it's a fallacy to think that a low price/earnings multiple always means a stock is too cheap. Sometimes, the earnings estimates are simply too high.
Cramer recalled that in the late 1980s, Bethlehem Steel, one of our country's largest steel makers, saw its shares trading at just two times earnings. At the time, everyone on Wall Street proclaimed that Bethlehem Steel was a once-in-a-lifetime bargain. By the 1990s however, Bethlehem Steel was losing money and a decade later, ceased to exist.
Cramer said he brings up this story to caution investors about Micron Technologies (MU - Get Report) , which many feel is a bargain at just five times earnings. While the company's DRAM business seems solid, it's flash memory business appears more vulnerable, which may cause estimates to fall, turning five times earnings into 10 times earnings practically overnight. Investors need to always be on guard, Cramer said, as sometimes a super-low multiple is a red flag, not an opportunity.
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