NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- With the Dow Jones Industrial Average down just 1% for the year, compared to horrible double-digit losses elsewhere in the world, Jim Cramer told his "Mad Money" TV show viewers that investors need to acknowledge all that's going right here in the U.S. Cramer listed four reasons why he felt the U.S. is holding up better than any other economy. First, Cramer said it's hats off to Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke. He said that Bernanke has kept interest rates super low, eliminating the competition of bonds versus stocks. With rates so low, he said, stocks are the only game in town. Second, Cramer credited companies for being committed to their shareholders by offering big dividends. He said American CEOs have been smart, diversifying away from any single economy and refinancing with ultra-low rates to guarantee great payouts for their shareholders. Third, Cramer said the U.S. economy is starting to head in the right direction. Everything from retail and auto sales to jobless claims is starting to head in the right direction, he noted, something that cannot be said for any other nations' economy. Finally, Cramer said that U.S. banks, thanks to Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner's stress tests, are now some of the strongest banks in the world. He said there is still a mortgage mess in our country, but our banks are now strong enough to weather just about any storm. Cramer said those are the reasons why stocks like McDonald's ( MCD), IBM ( IBM), Wal-Mart ( WMT) and Coca-Cola ( KO) have all delivered spectacular results over the past few years, and why the American markets are outperforming every other market in the world.
Poised for the ReboundInvestors looking for a best of breed steel maker with a juicy dividend need to look at Nucor ( NUE), Cramer told viewers. He said that with steel pricing bottoming and Nucor paying a 4.2% dividend, investors are getting paid to wait for the economy to improve. Cramer said that Nucor has been improving throughout the recession, increasing capacity so that it will be ready for the eventual rebound. The company currently has a 17% debt-to-capital ratio, meaning that Nucor has the ability to move in a number of different directions once the market recovers. Nucor pre-announced disappointing sales back on Sept. 13, a move that was widely anticipated. Cramer said the pre-announcement has removed a lot of the downside from Nucor's stock and investors can now afford to be patient. Cramer said the main challenge for Nucor is the construction market, but even there, Nucor has still been able to eek out some profits. He recommended starting a small position here and waiting for shares to dip to $32.22 a share, where it yields 4.5%, then buying even more.
Solid FloorIn the "Off The Charts" segment, Cramer went head to head with colleague Tim Collins over the chart of Cummins ( CMI), a stock which Cramer owns for his charitable trust,