NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- "Ford, Walton, Edison, Carnegie, Rockefeller, Steve Jobs left the whole pantheon in the dust," Jim Cramer told his "Mad Money" TV show viewers Thursday, as he paid homage to a man he called uniquely American and "the best we had." Cramer said it's hard to capture the importance of the iconic founder and former CEO of Apple ( AAPL), which he also owns for his
Separating the Company From the Stock"Even great companies can have risky stocks," Cramer told viewers, as he looked into what to do with Chipotle Mexican Grill ( CMG), a stock that's up over 500% since Cramer first got behind the stock in February 2009. After hitting a high of $336, shares of Chipotle have pulled back to just over $300. While analysts at Credit Suisse recently upgraded the stock, two other firms downgraded it to a hold. Cramer said it's hard to argue that Chipotle, the company, continues to do nothing but deliver. He said sales remain strong and the company has huge opportunities in front of it for growth, as well as its new Shophouse Asian Kitchen store concept. Shares of Chipotle trade at 35 times earnings for a reason, he said. But on the flip side, Cramer is worried about Chipotle, the stock. He explained that momentum names rally because the estimates are too low and companies are able to beat them time and time again. But in this market, with so much uncertainty, it will be hard to find many analysts willing to raise estimates. Additionally, if the company delivered anything other than blowout results, the stock will be crushed. Cramer said he's worried about Chipotle the stock, not the food. He said while long term he still likes the Chipotle story, he wouldn't argue with anyone willing to take profits now and buy their shares back in scales at lower levels. "If you can't take the short-term pain," he said, "it may be time to take some profits."
Crushing the CompetitionIn continued homage to Steve Jobs, Cramer said simply that "the Apple story isn't over." He said this company has returned over 13,000% since its initial IPO back in the 1980s, but even more remarkable than the value it created is the value its competitors have lost. Cramer noted that Apple's disruptive and destructive technology in the music business caused a 48% decline in the price of Sony ( SNE), not to mention a 45% decline shares of Warner Music, which was sold a few years back. Tack on all the brick-and-mortar record stores that are no longer around and it's obvious what a changing force Apple has been. In the PC market, Apple has been equally effective. While Apple may still only be the fifth largest computer maker with only 10% of the market, Dell ( DELL), Hewlett-Packard ( HPQ) and Microsoft ( MSFT) have lost a combined $127 billion in market cap. Apple grew its PC business by 23% in 2010. Apple products use flash memory, which has sent shares of hard drive makers Western Digital ( WDC), Seagate ( STX) and others down $5.5 billion in value. Then there is the mobile phone market, where former leaders like Nokia ( NOK) and Motorola ( MOT) have lost $108 billion, Research In Motion ( RIMM), $51 billion and Google ( GOOG), $7 billion. "Those are just the numbers we can add up," noted Cramer. When it comes to tablets, he said, consumers don't want tablets, they want iPads. Cramer concluded that even without Steve Jobs, "its still the world versus Apple and the world doesn't stand a chance."