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Yes, markets are still within in sniffing distance of all-time highs, Cramer said. But the pundits aren’t properly discussing how dramatic any upcoming correction might be.
That's why it’s not time to go to cash. But investors need to keep that option available given the potential destructiveness of systemic risk in the markets, Cramer said. Just look at the 1930s and the recent financial crisis for example of what happens when investors lose faith in financial system.
Cramer pointed to other systemic risk factors that underlie the markets. The impact of high-frequency trading is still unknown. Remember the flash crash? These kinds of risks and countless others are endemic in the market, something all investors must recognize and live with.
The best protection against this risk, Cramer said, is investing in quality. Finding solid management and financials combined with a long-term vision for growth is the best thing stock pickers can do to protect against systemic risk.
The ongoing situation in Iraq is troubling, Cramer said, and it’s possible that the impact on oil prices could jar the markets. But that's why caution is reasonable and panic about an oil-driven correction is excessive right now.
More Tax-Haven Acquisitions
Forget tax evasion. Cramer thinks it's time to learn about tax inversion after Medtronic (MDT) announced a $42.9 billion buy of Covidien (COV) Sunday. Tax inversion is when companies based in the United States moves headquarters to an overseas tax haven to avoid high taxes. Covidien is a great example of this practice, headquartered in Massaschusetts but domiciled in Ireland to take advantage of a relatively low tax rate.
So what other companies might provide a way to capitalize on tax inversion? Cramer thinks Eaton (ETN), an industrial manufacturing company, is an American company domiciled in Dublin. Cramer thinks Emerson Electric (EMR) or Honeywell (HON) could save themselves a huge chunk of their tax bill by acquiring Eaton, which Cramer said is “a terrific company.”
Yes, it’s ridiculous, Cramer admitted. But companies have figured out a way to make a bunch of extra money through virtual globetrotting without ever having to leave home except to check the mail.
Unilever Is a Winner
Feeling some World Cup fever, Cramer kicked off a week-long look at good companies located in countries favored in the quadrennial soccer championship.
Cramer says there's a lot to like in the Netherlands, which beat Spain recently. There's even more to like about Unilever (UL), which trails only Procter & Gamble (PG) and Nestle for market share control of the consumer goods industry.
Cramer likes Unilever’s "iconic" brands, reliable dividend and emerging markets exposure. The company counts Lipton, Breyer’s, Knorr, Dove and Vaseline among its roster. Unilever is looking to pull back from its food business, selling low-growth assets and weaker performing brands.
Not only does the Netherlands have a decent chance at winning this year’s World Cup, Cramer said, but it’s also home to some pretty fantastic companies. Unilever, with its "amazing emerging markets exposure," is a true standout.
No Huddle Offense
During his "No Huddle Offense" segment, Cramer discussed Starbucks’ (SBUX) announcement Monday that it would provide discounted online college education for its employees through an agreement with Arizona State University. Cramer called it “revolutionary.”
Many of his Wall Street colleagues thought it was a public relations ploy, Cramer said. It’s good publicity, no doubt. It’s a great idea. People do better with college degrees.
He thinks it’s one of those occasions where doing good is good for everybody involved: customers, employees and stockholders.
A company with a conscience does better at creating value, Cramer said. Given the performance of Starbucks’ stock vs. its peers, that’s empirically true. Educational benefits for employees can help a company hang on to its best and brightest. That comes back to its shareholders in the long run.
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-- Written by Scott Rutt in Washington, D.C.
To email Scott about this article, click here: Scott Rutt