Editor's note: To provide you with a more comprehensive account of Cramer's remarks from the "Mad Money" episode that aired June 22, we present this excerpt. Click here to read the full Mad Money Recap for that episode.
After over a century of violent oppression, the single worst piece of business legislation, if you're one of the 90 million shareholders in this country, has been overcome. That's right: I'm talking about the Sherman Antitrust Act, the law that makes monopolies illegal. Hey, maybe antitrust is great if you're a consumer, but this show isn't about saving you money at the supermarket, it's about making you money in the stock market.
And on Wall Street, let me tell you, there is nothing we like better than a monopoly or a near-monopoly. Which is why you need to buy yourself some
See, earlier this year, the government let Whirlpool and
merge. That's really not supposed to happen in a well-regulated capitalist economy. Together that merger gave one company about three-quarters of the American laundry room business.
If you're the kind of person who gets upset by these things, you might call the Justice Department's decision to let the merger through the most outrageous fold of the century. On TV I play a guy who's just out to make you money, but when you're not trying to get rich, feel free to be mad.
And I gotta tell you, the way Whirlpool got away with making itself a near-monopoly was just brilliant. They told the government that Kenmore would still compete with the combined Whirlpool and Maytag. And the government bought that line. You know what the problem with that is? Kenmore is just the private label brand that Whirlpool makes for
If there was ever any doubt in your mind that we have a government of, by and for the corporations, if you thought for a second that we weren't right back in the Gilded Age, if you had the least ounce of faith in our regulators to do the right thing, you've gotta believe Cramer now. I can't call anybody corrupt, but man, our government just can't help itself, it's like the Justice Department has a compulsion to roll over for big business whenever necessary.
And you know what? I love it, because it can make you rich, and that's all I care about.
Whirlpool and Maytag never should've been allowed to combine, but now that they have, it's just been a huge boon for Whirlpool. It's good to have 75% market share. I can't call them a monopoly because they really aren't; they don't have enough share to deserve that superlative praise. But they're close enough that I bet they can make you money.
Antitrust law was always bad for business, even if it helped out the public good, and I mean that in the
Mancur Olson way, not the Karl Marx way. Even if you're a hard-core,
, free-market capitalist, the Whirlpool deal must have made you angry. But now that it's reaping dividends, Cramer likes it.
We celebrate companies that reach for the stars, by which I mean, companies that try to become monopolies. We buy their stocks when they succeed, but we also need to pay attention to make sure nothing spoils the game.
We can't have something like competition -- what an unfair, terrible thing that is -- coming in and ruining Whirlpool's earnings now that they've pretty much cleared out the sizable competitors in America. Now, a lot of people out there are worried that Whirlpool, which makes its washers and dryers here in America, will get outcompeted by South Korean models. They can make them cheaper in East Asia, no question there.
But, and this is actually something that the Japanese discovered with cars, it's really expensive to ship washers and dryers across the Pacific. That's why
builds most of the cars it sells to America in America. Now, obviously, we see imported South Korean cars, but the economics of importing a really cheap car are different from the economics of importing a cheap washing machine. There's only so much cheaper you can make a dryer. The same is not true with a car, and shipping costs stay the same.
So what's that leave us with? Whirlpool is a company that's more powerful than the U.S. government, it's beaten the Sherman Antitrust Act and, as far as I'm concerned, it's totally insulated from foreign competition.
Bottom line: When you get a stock that's a slick as Whirlpool, you've gotta pull the trigger.
At the time of publication, Cramer was long Sears Holdings.
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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