NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Retailers, restaurants and supermarkets that rely on consumer spending are getting a boost from lower gas prices. 

The consumer sector is one of 12 sectors where TheStreet's Jim Cramer thinks investors should put their money. In each of Cramer's 12 sectors, "you can almost throw darts and win with a couple of rare exceptions," he wrote in Here Are 12 Sectors to Bet On on the Real Money Web site.

Cramer identified 15 consumer stocks where "that lower gasoline price is putting money in peoples' pockets and that last decline is going to make this group even hotter than dreamed," he wrote.

Among Cramer's list are Walmart (WMT - Get Report) and Target (TGT - Get Report) , which have been laggards. "I think that they have been stuck in the mud and are now unleashed," Cramer wrote. Other companies included in the list are Best Buy (BBY - Get Report) , which is "back from the dead," and GoPro (GPRO - Get Report) "which acted funky after that secondary [offering] but is now roaring," Cramer wrote.

Eight of the 15 stocks Cramer mentions are a part of the S&P Consumer Discretionary Index, which has risen 6.5% this year compared to the broader S&P 500, which is up 12% for the year to date.

We've listed Cramer's picks alongside the TheStreet Ratings, TheStreet's proprietary stock rating tool which projects a stock's total return potential over a 12-month period including both price appreciation and dividends. Based on 30 major data points, TheStreet Ratings uses a quantitative approach to rating stocks. The model is both objective, using elements such as volatility of past operating revenues, financial strength, and company cash flows, and subjective, including expected equities market returns, future interest rates, implied industry outlook and forecasted company earnings.

Cramer's analysis and that of TheStreet Ratings may differ as Cramer may evaluate stocks without regard to time horizon, while TheStreet Ratings uses consensus estimates for the next 12 months only. In addition, changes in TheStreet Ratings may lag Jim Cramer's analysis, as consensus estimates may take some time to change meaningfully.

Check out all of Cramer's picks in the consumer sector.

Walmart

Walmart (WMT - Get Report) is the largest retailer in the world. The company operates more than 11,000 stores in 27 countries through its supercenters, discount stores. Walmart Neighborhood Markets and Sam's Club stores.

Walmart had total sales of $473 billion for its fiscal 2014 year (ended January 2014).

Market Cap: $278 billion

52-week high: $88.09 on Nov. 28

52-week low: $72.27 on Feb. 5

Year-to-date Return: 10%

TheStreet Ratings team rates WAL-MART STORES INC as a Buy with a ratings score of A-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate WAL-MART STORES INC (WMT) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, good cash flow from operations, increase in stock price during the past year, growth in earnings per share and reasonable valuation levels. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: WMT Ratings Report

Target

Big-box retailer Target (TGT - Get Report) operates roughly 2,000 stores in the U.S. and Canada. The chain is known for its fashionable merchandise at discounted prices.

Target had sales of $72.5 billion for fiscal 2013.

Market Cap: $46 billion

52-week high: $74.76 on Nov. 28

52-week low: $54.66 on Feb. 5

Year-to-date Return: 15%

TheStreet Ratings team rates TARGET CORP as a Buy with a ratings score of B. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate TARGET CORP (TGT) a BUY. This is driven by a number of strengths, which we believe should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks we cover. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, increase in stock price during the past year, increase in net income, growth in earnings per share and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: TGT Ratings Report

CVS

CVS Health (CVS) operates through more than 7,600 CVS pharmacy stores as well as more than 800 retail health clinics under the Minute Clinic brand. CVS had fiscal 2013 revenue of $127 billion.

Market Cap: $103 billion

52-week high: $92 on Nov. 28

52-week low: $64.95 on Feb. 5

Year-to-date Return: 26%

TheStreet Ratings team rates CVS HEALTH CORP as a Buy with a ratings score of A+. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate CVS HEALTH CORP (CVS) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, solid stock price performance, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: CVS Ratings Report

L Brands

L Brands (LB) is the parent company of lingerie and intimates specialty retailer Victoria's Secret, its younger casual clothes offshoot Pink, Bath & Body Works and La Sensa. The company operates more than 2,900 stores through its brands in the U.S., Canada and the U.K.

L Brands had sales of $10.8 billion for fiscal 2013.

Market Cap: $24 billion

52-week high: $81.81 on Nov. 28

52-week low: $49.85 on Feb. 3

Year-to-date Return: 33%

TheStreet Ratings team rates L BRANDS INC as a Buy with a ratings score of B-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate L BRANDS INC (LB) a BUY. This is driven by a few notable strengths, which we believe should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks we cover. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, revenue growth and expanding profit margins. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: LB Ratings Report

 

Ross Stores

Ross Stores (ROST) operates Ross Dress for Less, an off-price apparel and home fashion chain, with more than 1,100 locations. The Dublin, Calif.-based company also operates 130 dd's DISCOUNTS.

In fiscal 2013, Ross Stores had annual sales of $10.2 billion.

Market Cap: $19 billion

52-week high: $91.99 on Nov. 28

52-week low: $61.83 on July 17

Year-to-date Return: 20% TheStreet Ratings team rates ROSS STORES INC as a Buy with a ratings score of A. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate ROSS STORES INC (ROST) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, growth in earnings per share, revenue growth, good cash flow from operations and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: ROST Ratings Report

Dollar General

Dollar General (DG) is the nation's largest small-box discount retailer, with approximately 11,200 stores in 40 states. The chain offers merchandise including consumables, seasonal, home products and apparel at substantial discounts. Dollar General had annual sales of $17.5 billion in fiscal 2013.

Market Cap: $20 billion

52-week high: $67.95 on Nov. 21

52-week low: $53 on May 30

Year-to-date Return: 11%

TheStreet Ratings team rates DOLLAR GENERAL CORP as a Buy with a ratings score of A. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate DOLLAR GENERAL CORP (DG) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, increase in stock price during the past year, growth in earnings per share, notable return on equity and increase in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: DG Ratings Report

VF Corp.

VF Corp. (VFC) is the parent company of more than 30 apparel and footwear brands including The North Face, Vans, Wrangler, Nautica and Timberland. VF Corp. had annual sales of $11.4 billion in fiscal 2013.

Market Cap: $32 billion

52-week high: $75.43 on Nov. 28

52-week low: $55.14 on Feb. 14

Year-to-date Return: 19%

TheStreet Ratings team rates VF CORP as a Buy with a ratings score of A+. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate VF CORP (VFC) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, growth in earnings per share, revenue growth, reasonable valuation levels and expanding profit margins. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: VFC Ratings Report

Best Buy

Best Buy (BBY - Get Report) is a large consumer electronics chain, selling tablets and computers, televisions, mobile phones, large and small appliances, entertainment products, digital imaging and accessories through its roughly 1,100 stores. Best Buy had fiscal 2014 sales of $42 billion.

Market Cap: $13 billion

52-week high: $43.19 on Dec. 5, 2013

52-week low: $22.15 on Jan. 31

Year-to-date Return: -7%

GoPro

GoPro (GPRO - Get Report) makes high-definition personal cameras popular with fans of action sports. The San Mateo, Calif.-based company went public in late June. Sales in its most recent quarter rose 45% compared to a year earlier to $280 million.

Market Cap: $9.5 billion

52-week high: $98.47 on Oct. 7

52-week low: $28.65 on June 26

Year-to-date Return: NA

Cracker Barrel

Cracker Barrel (CBRL - Get Report) operates more than 600 restaurants serving "home-style" food and unique shopping at its old country stores in 42 states. Cracker Barrel's sales for fiscal 2014 (ending Aug. 1) totaled $2.7 billion.

Market Cap: $3.1 billion

52-week high: $130.43 on Nov. 28

52-week low: $92.84 on May 15

Year-to-date Return: 16%

TheStreet Ratings team rates CRACKER BARREL OLD CTRY STOR as a Buy with a ratings score of A+. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate CRACKER BARREL OLD CTRY STOR (CBRL) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, increase in stock price during the past year, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income and reasonable valuation levels. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: CBRL Ratings Report

Whole Foods Market

Whole Foods Market (WFM) is a leading retailer of natural and organic foods. The Austin, Texas-based supermarket has roughly 400 stores. Sales for 2014 totaled $14 billion (its fiscal year ended Sept. 28, 2014).

Market Cap: $17 billion

52-week high: $59.70 on Dec. 20, 2013

52-week low: $36.08 on July 17

Year-to-date Return: -16%

TheStreet Ratings team rates WHOLE FOODS MARKET INC as a Buy with a ratings score of B. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate WHOLE FOODS MARKET INC (WFM) a BUY. This is driven by a number of strengths, which we believe should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks we cover. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income, good cash flow from operations and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: WFM Ratings Report

Kroger

Kroger (KR - Get Report) is a supermarket chain that operates more than 2,600 stores in 34 states. In January 2014, Kroger completed its acquisition of Harris Teeter, which added 227 stores. Kroger's fiscal 2013 sales totaled $98.4 billion.

Market Cap: $29 billion

52-week high: $60.38 on Nov. 28

52-week low: $35.13 on Feb. 5

Year-to-date Return: 49%

TheStreet Ratings team rates KROGER CO as a Buy with a ratings score of A-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate KROGER CO (KR) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, solid stock price performance, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: KR Ratings Report  

Tractor Supply

Tractor Supply (TSCO - Get Report) operates more than 1,300 retail stores selling supplies and other merchandise to recreational farmers and ranchers. Tractor Supply's sales in fiscal 2013 totaled $5.2 billion.

Market Cap: $10.5 billion

52-week high: $78.17 on Dec. 31, 2013

52-week low: $55.95 on Feb. 4

Year-to-date Return: 49%

TheStreet Ratings team rates TRACTOR SUPPLY CO as a Buy with a ratings score of A. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate TRACTOR SUPPLY CO (TSCO) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, increase in net income, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company is trading at a premium valuation based on our review of its current price compared to such things as earnings and book value."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: TSCO Ratings Report

Costco Wholesale

Costco Wholesale (COST - Get Report) is a membership warehouse that sells branded and private-labeled merchandise from packaged foods to appliances to electronics to health and beauty supplies. Costco also operates gas stations and pharmacies, among other things. As of November, Costco operates 671 warehouses, with more than 75 million members. Costco sales for its fiscal year 2014 (ended Aug. 31, 2014) totaled $112.6 billion.

Market Cap: $62 billion

52-week high: $143.34 on Dec. 2

52-week low: $109.50 on Feb. 4

Year-to-date Return: 20%

TheStreet Ratings team rates COSTCO WHOLESALE CORP as a Buy with a ratings score of A+. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate COSTCO WHOLESALE CORP (COST) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: COST Ratings Report

Nike

Nike (NKE - Get Report) a global footwear brand that sells fashion and performance sneakers for men, women and children in categories that include basketball, soccer, running, training, action sports and golf. The Beaverton, Ore.-based company operates both as distributor and retailer for its products. It had revenue of $28 billion for fiscal 2014 (ended May 31, 2014).

Market Cap: $84 billion

52-week high: $99.76 on Nov. 28

52-week low: $69.85 on Feb. 5

Year-to-date Return: 24%

TheStreet Ratings team rates NIKE INC as a Buy with a ratings score of A+. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate NIKE INC (NKE) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, notable return on equity, expanding profit margins and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: NKE Ratings Report 

-Written by Laurie Kulikowski in New York.

Follow @LKulikowski