Playing an Alcoa Bid - TheStreet

This column was originally published on RealMoney on Feb. 13 at 7:34 a.m. EST. It's being republished as a bonus for TheStreet.com readers. For more information about subscribing to RealMoney, please click here.

For months now, I

have been saying that

Alcoa

(AA) - Get Report

will be bought. Any underperforming asset in the mineral business -- whether it be Alcoa or

Phelps Dodge

(PD) - Get Report

or

Inco

-- will be bought by a foreign company desperate to put some of its winnings to work before someone else does.

We are in the age of minerals, and the assets that are available are dwindling. Those who make the acquisitions --

CVRD

(RIO) - Get Report

,

Freeport

(FCX) - Get Report

and

Yamana

(AUY) - Get Report

, for example -- will be the winners. The losers will be those left at the altar because you need worldwide distribution and a global presence.

It's not that Alcoa's so bad, although it has been undermanaged. It's that it has gotten so small relative to good companies like

BHP

(BHP) - Get Report

and

Rio Tinto

(RTP)

.

BHP has been busy rewarding its shareholders with its winnings, so I think Rio Tinto is more likely. Either way, there's less and less of a reason for Alcoa to be independent, and I would buy it up to $35 for a $40-to-$45 takeover bid.

Random musings:

The UBS target hike of

Avon

(AVP) - Get Report

makes sense. That Avon quarter was a big one. ... Don't buy into any up opening here. Way too treacherous. With snow expected to be falling midday, I suspect the bears will be able to push anything down to the strikes they want. How do I know this? 'Cause I used to do it, silly!

At the time of publication, Cramer had no positions in the stocks mentioned.

Jim Cramer is a director and co-founder of TheStreet.com. He contributes daily market commentary for TheStreet.com's sites and serves as an adviser to the company's CEO. Outside contributing columnists for TheStreet.com and RealMoney.com, including Cramer, may, from time to time, write about stocks in which they have a position. In such cases, appropriate disclosure is made. To see his personal portfolio and find out what trades Cramer will make before he makes them, sign up for

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