Among the bright spots for the company were soups and frozen foods in the U.S., while Powell noted that yogurt sold well in Europe and ice cream was hot in Asia and China. Even in the company's troubled cereal aisle, Powell said price points have been adjusted and brands are being reinvigorated. There are lots of ways for General Mills to win, Powell concluded. When asked about the company's dividend, Powell said General Mills remains committed to both its dividend and its stock buyback program and he hopes to continue the 11% compound annual growth they've been able to deliver in the dividend over the past few years. Cramer said stocks like General Mills are how investors make money. He told them to buy some shares, reinvest the dividends and hold on for the long run while Powell does the hard work of making the money.
Working on the Railroads
Continuing with his week-long "Oligopoly" series, Cramer turned his sights on the railroads, where a mere four players now control 90% of all rail freight in the U.S. Cramer explained that in 1978 there were 36 major railroads in the U.S. but thanks to deregulation that number shrank to just nine players by 1997. Today, there are only four, with CSX ( CSX) and Norfolk Southern ( NSC) operating in the east and Union Pacific ( UNP) and Burlington Northern, now part of Berkshire Hathaway ( BRK.B), in the west. Cramer said he's a fan of Berkshire because the company also has exposure to insurance and housing. In addition he likes Kansas City Southern ( KSU), which primarily operates lines from Mexico into the central U.S. He noted that shares of Kansas City are up 40% since he first got behind that stock in December. With natural gas prices on the rise and the prospect of increased coal usage likely, Cramer said shares of Norfolk Southern will be the biggest benefactor. He was also a fan of CSX, which has been adding trains to transport oil from the Bakken shale region.
In the Lightning Round, Cramer was bullish on Oneok Partners ( OKS), AT&T ( T), Verizon ( VZ), International Paper ( IP), Synovus Financial ( SNV), KeyCorp ( KEY), Oracle ( ORCL), Vale ( VALE) and Facebook ( FB).