Cramer's 'Mad Money' Recap: No News Is No News

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NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- News that's expected by everyone isn't really news, Jim Cramer said Monday on "Mad Money" after the markets finished near their lows for the day. He said that while the markets rallied last week in anticipation of good news from Spain, what actually transpired fell far short of expectations.

Cramer said today's market moves should not have been a shock to educated investors, as the markets were demanding a lot of the eurozone this weekend. Spain needed capital, he said, not more loan guarantees, which means the crisis will lumber on.

If the news out of Europe really had fixed the problem, investors would have been reaching for gold, noted Cramer, as any true bailout would be seen as inflationary. He said the CurrencyShares Euro Trust ( FXE) would have also risen above $130 and the bond yields for most European countries would have fallen even more. But none of these events happened, which should have been the tip-off the latest news wasn't what the markets were expecting.

Cramer said what the European countries need most is growth; to date, none of the bail out plans offer growth. That's why he continues to recommend stocks that offer domestic security and dividends and are not overly economically sensitive. AT&T ( T) and Verizon ( VZ) topped Cramer's list, along with cigarette maker Altria ( MO).

What Drives Rental Companies

Sometimes great ideas don't make for great companies, Cramer told viewers, as he pitted the upstart Zipcar ( ZIP) against the incumbent Hertz Global ( HTZ) to see which company rules the rental car market.

Cramer said when Zipcar came public last year it was billed as a revolution in car sharing, one that promised to deliver rapid growth and profits for all. However, since its IPO shares of Zipcar are down 43% and might not yet be done heading lower.

While Zipcar is the leader in the hourly rental car market with some 500,000 members sharing over 9,000 vehicles, Cramer said there are simply no barriers to enter this market and that's precisely what Hertz and other rental car companies have done. He called Zipcar's model a niche market for a small percentage of car renters, one that may have already peaked. Zipcar has been around since 2000, noted Cramer, yet the company is only now turning a profit.

Meanwhile, Hertz is the number one airport-based rental car service, the opposite of niche. The company also gets 15% of sales from equipment rentals, a segment set to grow with the economy, and has emerging market prospects in both China and Brazil. Hertz' new kiosk-based rental system doesn't even need to be staffed and allows customers to rent cars using simple RFID smartcards that unlock and start their cars.

So while Zipcar trades at 29% earnings and has shaky growth prospects, Cramer said he prefers to invest with Hertz, which trades at only eight times earnings with a 12% long-term growth rate. "It's not even a fair fight," Cramer concluded.

Coke or Pepsi?

In the age-old question of which is better, Coca-Cola ( KO) or Pepsico ( PEP), Cramer announced a stunning change of opinion: He's eliminated Coke from his charitable trust, Action Alerts PLUS , and is now going for Pepsi.

Cramer explained that for years Coke has had a lot going for it. The company had no snack business and thus was not exposed to rising grain prices. Coke also had a robust international business, with nearly 80% of sales stemming from overseas. But in today's markets what had once been tailwinds for Coke are now changing into headwinds, making Pepsi the winning bet.

Commodity prices are falling, said Cramer, meaning Pepsi is set to benefit from falling grain prices but also from falling plastics, cardboards and even gasoline and transportation costs. Pepsi is not exposed to the slowness in western Europe, having chosen to invest in eastern Europe. Even the company's dividend yield, now 3.1%, has surpassed Coke's 2.7% yield.

Pepsico is also seeing strength in its Mountain Dew brand, which has moved into the number one spot in both India and Pakistan. The company has also announced job cuts and other cost savings to further bolster earnings.

That's why after many years, Cramer said the answer to the question "Coke or Pepsi" has finally swung to Pepsico's favor.

Lightning Round

Here's what Cramer had to say about caller's stocks during the "Lightning Round":

Legacy Reserves ( LGCY): "I've got enough problems with ConocoPhillips ( COP). I'm not going there."

WR Grace ( GRA): "I have companies like Dow Chemical ( DOW) with a 4% yield that they're giving away. Dow, yes, yours, no."

Arena Pharmaceuticals ( ARNA): "I think it's a terrific spec stock. I think they should raise a lot of money to fight obesity."

Skullcandy ( SKUL): "I don't see why this accessory company should be bought. I don't like their niche."

Frontier Communications ( FTR): "Oh come on, that's way too dangerous. You have Verizon and AT&T. Why look any further?"

Nokia ( NOK): "There's nothing there. There will be no takeover."

International Game Technology ( IGT): "I'm done with that one. If you need a casino play I'll send you to Las Vegas Sands ( LVS) but you don't need a casino play right now."

Stanley Black & Decker ( SWK): "It should be higher but it has European exposure. No one wants any Europe."

Cedar Fair ( FUN): "One way to have fun is to own FUN. It has a 6% yield and it's a great domestic security play."

Up and Down Chart

Not all stocks go up in a straight line, and that's why Cramer circled back to Chart Industries ( GTLS), a stock that's up 44% since his original recommendation in February 2011, but also one that's fallen 13% since Cramer last spoke with the company's CEO on April 13.

Cramer said there's still a lot to like at Chart Industries. First, the company reported a terrific quarter April 26, announcing its backlog of business grew by 35% year over year, and margins expanded. Chart derives 58% of its sales from outside the U.S. where, unlike the U.S., countries are clamoring for the clean, cheap alternative to oil.

But perhaps the biggest driver for Chart Industries were last week's announcements by Westport Innovations ( WPRT) that they're partnering with equipment giant Caterpillar ( CAT) to make natural gas mining equipment and locomotives and the announcement that Royal Dutch Shell ( RDS.A) will be building 200 natural gas fueling stations across the U.S.

Cramer said both of these announcements are great news for Chart, yet the stock barely budged on the news. Clearly, more natural gas vehicles and fueling stations will mean more business for Chart, which makes the technology and the tanks to liquefy natural gas for vehicle use.

With so many positives, Cramer said that shares of Chart deserve to be much higher than where they trade today, affording investors a terrific entry point.

No Huddle Offense

In his "No Huddle Offense" segment, Cramer compared and contrasted the two main forces in today's market, Spain and Apple ( AAPL), an Action Alerts PLUS holding.

Cramer said that unlike Spain, which is trying hard to stop a mass exodus from its banks, developers at Apple were clamoring to get into the company's annual conference. While Spain has no plans for growth, Apple unveiled a myriad of ways it will be enhancing its bottom line. While Apple is ascendant, Spain is sadly tired, old and just plain broke.

However, there is one similarity, noted Cramer. While Spain wins for now, it's clear that everyone else loses, he said. In the case of Apple, as the company innovates, its competitors will lose, too.

--Written by Scott Rutt in Washington, D.C.

To contact the writer of this article, click here: Scott Rutt.

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To watch replays of Cramer's video segments, visit the Mad Money page on CNBC.
At the time of publication, Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS had a position in AAPL.

Jim Cramer, host of the CNBC television program "Mad Money," is a Markets Commentator for TheStreet.com, Inc., and CNBC, and a director and co-founder of TheStreet.com. All opinions expressed by Mr. Cramer on "Mad Money" are his own and do not reflect the opinions of TheStreet.com or its affiliates, or CNBC, NBC UNIVERSAL or their parent company or affiliates. Mr. Cramer's opinions are based upon information he considers to be reliable, but neither TheStreet.com, nor CNBC, nor either of their affiliates and/or subsidiaries warrant its completeness or accuracy, and it should not be relied upon as such. Mr. Cramer's statements are based on his opinions at the time statements are made, and are subject to change without notice. No part of Mr. Cramer's compensation from CNBC or TheStreet.com is related to the specific opinions expressed by him on "Mad Money."

None of the information contained in "Mad Money" constitutes a recommendation by Mr. Cramer, TheStreet.com or CNBC that any particular security, portfolio of securities, transaction, or investment strategy is suitable for any specific person. You must make your own independent decisions regarding any security, portfolio of securities, transaction, or investment strategy mentioned on the program. Mr. Cramer's past results are not necessarily indicative of future performance. Neither Mr. Cramer, nor TheStreet.com, nor CNBC guarantees any specific outcome or profit, and you should be aware of the real risk of loss in following any strategy or investments discussed on the program. The strategy or investments discussed may fluctuate in price or value and you may get back less than you invested. Before acting on any information contained in the program, you should consider whether it is suitable for your particular circumstances and strongly consider seeking advice from your own financial or investment adviser.

Some of the stocks mentioned by Mr. Cramer on "Mad Money" are held in Mr. Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS Portfolio. When that is the case, appropriate disclosure is made on the program and in the "Mad Money" recap available on TheStreet.com. The Action Alerts PLUS Portfolio contains all of Mr. Cramer's personal investments in publicly-traded equity securities only, and does not include any mutual fund holdings or other institutionally managed assets, private equity investments, or his holdings in TheStreet.com, Inc. Since March 2005, the Action Alerts PLUS Portfolio has been held by a Trust, the realized profits from which have been pledged to charity. Mr. Cramer retains full investment discretion with respect to all securities contained in the Trust. Mr. Cramer is subject to certain trading restrictions, and must hold all securities in the Action Alerts PLUS Portfolio for at least one month, and is not permitted to buy or sell any security he has spoken about on television or on his radio program for five days following the broadcast.

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