Next, the combined company would also have more leverage over its two main customers, Home Depot ( HD) and Lowe's ( LOW), and could negotiate better pricing and shelf space. Cramer said he also likes a merger based on international exposure as the combine company would have a solid foothold in China and other key markets around the globe. Cramer last recommended both Masco and Fortune a year ago and since then Fortune has risen 72% while Masco is up 48%. He said a combined company would be able to head even higher given how early we are in the U.S. housing cycle.
Getting to the Core of Apple
Can Apple ( AAPL) still dazzle investors? Cramer told viewers he's starting to have doubts, which has caused him to trim his position of Apple in Action Alerts PLUS by half. Cramer said Apple now has a few things going against it. The company doesn't appear to have another blockbuster product up its sleeve, at least not that anyone can tell. Its breakthrough TV product may not have the support of cable and content providers, he said, something that would be crucial for its success. Then there are the missteps, like Maps and the new iTunes, which is loathed by many consumers. Cramer said this customer discontent is brutal for a company that charges a premium for its products and has traditionally not made many public mistakes. Finally, Cramer said there's his kids, both of whom have come to him recently complaining they're fed up with Apple, as are many of their friends. Cramer said Apple still remains incredible cheap trading at just 10 times earnings with a 2% yield, but that may not be enough to save the stock. Apple's fortunes could turn on a dime, Cramer conceded, which is why he continues to hold onto Apple shares. But for the near term, the stock may continue to flounder.
In the Lightning Round, Cramer was bullish on Limited Brands ( LTD), Blackstone Group ( BX), Kohlberg Kravis Roberts ( KKR), Trinity Industries ( TRN), HollyFrontier ( HFC), GNC Holdings ( GNC), BioScrip ( BIOS), ConocoPhillips ( COP), New York Community Bancorp ( NYCB), Public Storage ( PSA) and iShares MSCI Japan Index ( EWJ). Cramer was bearish on Fortress Investments ( FIG), Resolute Energy ( REN) and Nomura Holdings ( NMR).
Know Your IPO
In the "Know Your IPO" segment, Cramer circled back on an initial public offering that had a horrible debut in 2012 but now may be ready to run. He said Ruckus Wireless ( RKUS), which came public on Nov. 15, is now up 77% from its post-IPO lows and investors should take notice. Cramer explained that Ruckus aims to solve one of Wi-Fi's biggest weaknesses: interference. He said the company's routers and access points use dynamic antennas that adapt to changing conditions in real time, making them ideal for densely populated areas like the enterprise and college campuses. By using Ruckus technology, the amount of coverage a company can get from a single access point is expanded, meaning the company can purchase fewer of them. The Wi-Fi segment is expected to grow at 20% a year, noted Cramer, and with Ruckus taking share from competitors, it should grow even faster. He said shares are currently sporting a sky-high valuation at six times sales, which is why he'd wait for a pullback before pulling the trigger.
No Huddle Offense
In his "No Huddle Offense" segment, Cramer opined on why stocks like Research in Motion ( RIMM), Hewlett-Packard ( HPQ), Best Buy ( BBY) and Avon Products ( AVP) have all been able to rally despite reporting horrible earnings. Cramer said it's clear all of these names were oversold and attracting bargain hunters, along with those investors hopeful for a breakup or takeover or restructuring or new product to save them. The problem is, we have no hard evidence of any of these Hail Marys, said Cramer, which makes all of these stocks prone to give up their recent gains in the blink of an eye. Be careful, he concluded. To sign up for Jim Cramer's free Booyah! newsletter with all of his latest articles and videos please click here.To watch replays of Cramer's video segments, visit the Mad Money page on CNBC. -- Written by Scott Rutt in Washington, D.C. To email Scott about this article, click here: Scott Rutt Follow Scott on Twitter @ScottRutt or get updates on Facebook, ScottRuttDC