RealMoney Radio: Wal-Mart Not So Smart

Cramer says that the retail giant's rivals have cut costs enough to compete.
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"The market is turning high here because we are seeing some fabulous retail sales, Jim Cramer said on his

"RealMoney" radio show Thursday.

But these sales are not spreading to

Wal-Mart

(WMT) - Get Report

. Wal-Mart is trying to be a "cooler place to shop," but it's not working because its competitors have gotten smart and have learned how to cut costs, Cramer said.

Even though these competitors might not have found a way to cut their costs as much as Wal-Mart has, it's enough of a cut to keep people away from the megaretailer, Cramer said.

Cramer, who has recently visiting stores such as

Macy's

(FD)

,

Target

(TGT) - Get Report

and

Kohl's

(KSS) - Get Report

on both east and west coasts, said the stores "make you feel rich without being rich."

And

J.C. Penney

(JCP) - Get Report

is no different, he said.

The belief that Wal-Mart is the U.S. economy is wrong, Cramer said.

"It is getting kicked in the butt by its rivals," he said. "I would not buy it even down a dollar. I still like Kohl's, Target and J.C. Penney."

Wal-Mart was recently trading at $48.64.

If you're like me, Cramer said, you should be tiring of hearing about the investigation of

Hewlett-Packard

(HPQ) - Get Report

, which he owns for his charitable trust,

Action Alerts PLUS.

In Cramer's opinion, investigators should be focusing more on what happened with natural gas last year. When he looks at the profits of

Amaranth

, the now-closed hedge fund, and sees how it kept natural gas up in the market by aggressively buying futures, Cramer mulls whether it played a hand in the natural gas spike last winter.

"Given the abundance, I have to wonder if Amaranth and a bunch of other hedge funds were in concert" and moved up pricing, he said. "That is worth investigating."

Every week readers of

TheStreet.com

vote on the stock they most want Cramer to talk about. This week's "Cramer on Demand" stock was

Walgreen

(WAG)

.

Walgreen is "a high-quality franchise that is exactly what people should want to be in, in this type of environment," he said.

Cramer said he doesn't believe that the company's pharmacy will be hurt by Wal-Mart. Anyway, Walgreen is not just a pharmacy, but has other businesses as well, he said.

It would be "ridiculous" if this stock, which was recently at $42.98, went to its low of $39. "I want to buy it here," he said.

Cramer told listeners not to trust it when they hear 'buy on the dip.' Instead he recommended buying in stages and to take a look at a

Bank of America

(BAC) - Get Report

chart -- "a great proxy for a lot of the financial stocks."

To see the most recent edition of The RealMoney Radio Recap in its entirety, please click here. This recap is published every day around 3 p.m. ET.

At the time of publication, Cramer was long Hewlett-Packard.

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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