Cramer's 'Mad Money' Recap: Economists Don't Know Stocks

Search Jim Cramer's "Mad Money" trading recommendations using our exclusive "Mad Money" Stock Screener.

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- "The economists don't know a thing about stocks," Jim Cramer proclaimed to his "Mad Money" TV show viewers Thursday as he sounded off against the academics who have been trying to keep individual investors out of our red-hot stock market.

Cramer said the economists who warn that weakness in China and Europe will spell doom for U.S. stocks or those who warn that increases in our payroll taxes or the price of gasoline will cause our economy to stop in its tracks have been wrong so many times it's a wonder they still bother to offer their opinions. These macro-economic theories may work in the classroom, he said, but so far in the real world they haven't amounted to a hill of beans.

Cramer once again explained how important the housing sector is to the U.S. economy. Rising home prices make people feel wealthier, while new home construction allows them to move around more freely. A rising stock market has boosted IRAs and 401(k)s around the country, he said, and the strong dollar has created bargains for those traveling or selling overseas.

The economists cite the rise in payroll taxes and gasoline as major worries, but for most people those changes have been barely noticeable, said Cramer. The fact is that most people are better off now than they were four years ago and that simple notion has lifted stocks from Macy's ( M) to Panera Bread ( PNRA), Pfizer ( PFE) to REITs including Kimco Realty ( KIM) and Tanger Factory Outlets ( SKT).

Cramer said it doesn't take a genius to see what's happening in the markets, it just takes someone looking at individual companies rather than macro-economic trends that are hazy at best. The economists don't know about stocks, he concluded, because if they did they would see how dead wrong they've been for months.

Off the Charts

In the "Off The Charts" segment, Cramer dove into the health of the Nasdaq with colleague Tim Collins to find out if the tech-heavy average can prosper without the leadership of Apple ( AAPL), a stock Cramer owns for his charitable trust, Action Alerts PLUS , and one that's weighed on the index since the middle of last year.

Looking at a daily chart of the Powershares QQQ ( QQQ) Collins noted the Nasdaq appears to be in a topping out process, with the stochastics -- a momentum indicator -- once again showing a double-dip pattern, similar to those in December and February, both of which resulted in a 3% to 5% pullback in the average. Collins thinks that with the Nasdaq trading in such a tight range, it may be poised to lose its floor of support and slide significantly lower.

The weekly chart painted a similar picture, noted Collins, with another rising wedge pattern coupled with the relative strength indicator, or RSI, signaling a bearish divergence of lower highs and lower lows.

Cramer said Collins' analysis is worrisome because it shows the money that's been flowing out of Apple may no longer be flowing into the Nasdaq at large, which means the index may not be able to hold current levels for much longer. "I don't like it when the chart is against me," Cramer concluded.

Three Cancer Fighters

For the next installment in his series of speculative biotech stocks, Cramer highlighted ImmunoGen ( IMGN), Seattle Genetics ( SGEN) and Onyx Pharmaceuticals ( ONXX), three companies leading the fight against cancer.

Cramer said shares of ImmunoGen have doubled since he first recommended it in November 2009, but this $1.3 billion company still has a lot of room to run. The company's targeted cancer therapies are far more potent than old-line treatments.

While recent drug approvals may benefit ImmunoGen's many partners more than itself, Cramer said the approvals validate the technology and will translate into big wins for the company's many other drugs in its pipeline. He advised waiting for a pullback in the stock before buying in ahead of its April 12 analyst day.

Shares of Seattle Genetics are up 50% since Cramer got behind the stock in June 2012 and, like InnumoGen, this company also makes targeted cancer therapies. While Seattle Genetics may only have one drug on the market, it has 20 drugs in clinical trials, including four in late-stage trials. With its host of partnerships, Cramer said, Seattle Genetics will receive over $3 billion in milestone payments over the next few years to aid in the continuation of its development.

Finally, there's Onyx, a larger, $6.2 billion company with three products on the market treating five different indications. With over $1 billion in sales so far, things look bright for this biotech, which has a potential $5 billion breast cancer treatment in the works. With no new approvals expected soon, Cramer said investors can also wait for this stock to offer a good entry point before buying in.

Lightning Round

In the Lightning Round, Cramer was bullish on Acadia Pharmaceuticals ( ACAD), Magnum Hunter ( MHR), McDonald's ( MCD), Panera Bread and Seadrill ( SDRL).

Cramer was bearish on SandRidge Energy ( SD), Wendy's ( WEN), Transocean ( RIG) and Plains Exploration ( PXP).

Executive Decision: Jack Fonss

In the "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer continued his crusade against highly-leveraged ETFs by sitting down with Jack Fonss, CEO of AccuShares, a company hoping to offer investors some clarity on what these complex financial instruments are all about.

Fonss said that while the ETF market started out with good intentions, it has involved into a mess that no investor can understand. He said many of the levered ETFs, while marketed as great for professional traders, are really good for no one because they rebalance daily and often produce extremely poor results.

Fonss said that in a market that is only going up or only going down, some of these instruments may make money, but in a normal market with both ups and downs they simply don't work.

Compounding the problem is there are now some 15,000 ETF products and many investors aren't doing their due diligence to understand what the funds actually do. The US Natural Gas ETF ( UNG), for example, doesn't invest in natural gas, it invests in natural gas futures that do not trade in tandem with the commodity as individual investors may think.

Fonss' company, AccuShares, hopes to solve this problem by offering funds that stick to what he described as the three best practices for ETFs: holding only liquid assets, holding them consistently and doing so in a transparent manner.

Cramer lauded Fonss for his efforts in helping individual investors and vowed to have him return as soon as AccuShares initial funds are available for trading.

No Huddle Offense

In his "No Huddle Offense" segment, Cramer responded to the analysts who have once again become enamored with restaurant stocks. He said our nation is a lot richer than most people realize, which is why the earnings are on a roll at chains including Panera Bread and Starbucks ( SBUX).

Cramer said the restaurant stocks will also be helped by falling food and gasoline costs, which are not factored into many estimates.

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
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, Inc., and CNBC, and a director and co-founder of All opinions expressed by Mr. Cramer on "Mad Money" are his own and do not reflect the opinions of 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, 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 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, 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, 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 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, 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.

If you liked this article you might like

Thank Goodness It's Friday: Cramer's 'Mad Money' Recap (Friday 3/23/18)

Thank Goodness It's Friday: Cramer's 'Mad Money' Recap (Friday 3/23/18)

If You Own Retail Stocks, Be Terrified of a Federal Reserve That Is Hiking Rates

If You Own Retail Stocks, Be Terrified of a Federal Reserve That Is Hiking Rates

You Are Badly Missing the Point on Tesla

You Are Badly Missing the Point on Tesla

Jim Cramer: What's the Playbook for a Return to the Upside?
Jim Cramer: Retail Stocks Could Really Roar on a Market Snapback

Jim Cramer: Retail Stocks Could Really Roar on a Market Snapback