Baker Hughes' (BHI) plan to buy back stock and pay down debt after its failed $35 billion merger with Halliburton (HAL) - Get Report is not enough to change TheStreet founder Jim Cramer's opinion on the stock.
And Wall Street appears to agree, as BHI shares were down about 3% to $46.92 apiece midday Monday.
"I don't like either company. ... Schlumberger, that's the one to buy," said Cramer, the manager of the Action Alerts PLUS portfolio, which owns SLB.
Baker Hughes announced Monday it would buy back $1.5 billion in shares and pay down $1 billion in debt with the $3.5 billion break-up fee it will claim from Halliburton after their proposed deal fell apart due to regulatory opposition.
The Houston oilfield services provider also plans to refinance its $2.5 billion credit facility, which expires in September.
Baker Hughes further said it would improve efficiency by cutting costs over and above the estimated $300 million worth it was forced to keep as part of the merger deal, which it expects will save it $500 million annually by the end of this year.
Halliburton and Baker Hughes, along with the Department of Justice, confirmed the deal was dead Sunday evening.
The companies abandoned the merger in response to the government's civil antitrust lawsuit in the U.S. District Court in Delaware, filed April 6, seeking to block the merger, according to the DOJ statement.
Meanwhile, Halliburton chairman and CEO Dave Lesar attributed the deal's failure to "challenges in obtaining remaining regulatory approvals and general industry conditions that severely damaged deal economics," while Baker Hughes' Martin Craighead, took the opportunity to reiterate his belief in "the vast potential of the business combination to deliver benefits for shareholders, customers and both companies' employees."
But Cramer said industry followers suspected those who formulated this deal did not have their feet planted in this reality.
"How could anyone ever think this deal was going to go through," he said. "There was really some poor lawyering. We don't talk about that enough."
Cramer further said he likes both oilfield service providers as companies, but suggested that both were poorly advised in considering the merger, which ultimately led to its failure.
"They were advised really terribly," he explained. "They were advised that listen if you sell off this and do that, the Justice Department is going to be fine, but that was a total misread of the antitrust."
--Laura Berman and Claire Poole contributed to this report.