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NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- "I'm old. In most cases, that's a bad thing," Jim Cramer said on "Mad Money" Wednesday. But occasionally there are benefits to being old -- and today is one of those days.
These are not normal times, even in earnings season, he said. Wednesday's weakness had nothing to do with earnings, which were predominately good. The weakness, Cramer said, is about emerging markets, and the impact on our own stock markets. Cramer said he's uniquely qualified to riff on this spillover because he's been around long enough to remember investing through other emerging markets panics just like we're having right now.
Turkey hiked interest rates on Tuesday night, hoping that people would stop taking money out of the country, Cramer said. He remembers that 22 years ago, Turkey was supposed to be the next Germany. He couldn't resist investing there. Well, currencies declined and in a month his money was cut in half, and then halved again as international currencies spiraled out of control.
The reason you hear so much concern over markets like Turkey, Cramer said, is the concern that its problems could spread.
What about Mexico? In 1994, it was all the rage. Cramer learned to stick to his knitting after his Turkey experience and keep his money at home -- and gained.
Don't let the discussion about emerging markets scare you off your game, Cramer said. Stay focused on what works. This isn't like the recent euro mess, which shellacked some of the world's most developed economies.
Cramer said to be patient in the face of what could be a 5% decline. It's time to evaluate your timeline. If you're in for the long haul, get your shopping list ready. You might need it.
Executive Decision: Dave Cote
Even though everyone seems terrified about the global economy, let's not get too despondent, Cramer said. There are still plenty of high-quality companies that are executing fabulously.
Consider Honeywell (HON), a holding in Cramer's charitable trust, Action Alerts PLUS. Last Friday, it reported great results and strong headline earnings that were lost in the shuffle of a major market selloff.