Cramer's 'Mad Money' Recap: China's Importance

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NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- China is more important than we are, according to Jim Cramer. He told "Mad Money" viewers Thursday that positive news out of China was all it took to lift our slumping markets.

Today's upward move in the big-cap industrials and tech stocks could not be traced to anything positive happening here in the U.S., but were caused by a rise in Chinese purchasing, which took the markets by surprise.

Everything from Caterpillar ( CAT) to Fedex ( FDX) to Joy Global ( JOY) was on the move as a result.

The markets move on expectations, Cramer continued, and there have been three in control as of late. The first is that the U.S. economy is struggling, but holding its own. Second is that Europe remains a disaster. Third, that China is a disappointment. It's the change in the latter the markets were responding to, said Cramer, as China posted some of its strongest economic numbers for the year.

That one data point from China was even able to lift stocks like Nike ( NKE), which sells big into China, as well as Eaton ( ETN), a stock Cramer owns for his charitable trust, Action Alerts PLUS , and even coal exporter Peabody Energy ( BTU).

Cramer noted that China is also a huge market for tech, and may be able to single-handedly rescue that troubled sector.

Charting a Course

In the "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer sat down with Sam Thomas, chairman, president and CEO of Chart Industries ( GTLS), a natural gas liquids company with shares up 20% for the year but which also just reported an earnings miss of 8 cents a share.

Thomas said our country will be better off using domestic natural gas as a surface vehicle fuel, but so far the timing has been taking longer than expected. He said it's been a complex process to provide both a supply of natural gas as well as the demand for it at the same time.

"The chickens and the eggs are ready to do their parts," joked Thomas, but it certainly will take longer than one or two years to get both natural gas trucks on the road and stations to refuel them.

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