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


The industrial stocks have become coiled springs, Jim Cramer told his Mad Money viewers Thursday, and when those springs finally snap, you get rallies like you saw today.

Case in point: Caterpillar (CAT) , which slashed its earnings guidance and sent shares lower by $2 a share in premarket trading, only to see them rally and rally hard, up 2%, by the close.

How can this happen? Cramer explained that commodity prices have been rallying as of late and now that he Federal Reserve is no longer raising interest rates, that means a weaker U.S. dollar, which is great news for Cat, a company that sells a great deal overseas.

But there's more to the Caterpillar story. First, there are the many hedge funds betting against the stock. If a big estimate cut doesn't send shares lower, what will? That was what the shorts were asking as they scrambled to cover their positions. Then there are the many mutual funds that have been underweight the industrials. What a great time to buy after all of the bad news is finally out in the open.

Add all of these factors together and it's easy to see how a rally is born. That rally extended well beyond just Caterpillar. Eaton (ETN) rose 3.8%, Illinois Tool Works (ITW) gained 2.4% and Fedex (FDX) roared higher by 11.8% after its strong earnings.

All of the money rotation into the industrials is coming out of the banks, which need higher interest rates, and pharmaceuticals, which have been plagued by the woes of Valeant Pharmaceuticals (VRX) . How long will the move last? Cramer said to keep an eye on the dollar to find out.

Executive Decision: Brad Smith

For his "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer sat down with Brad Smith, chairman and CEO of Intuit (INTU) , the small business accounting software company that also offers TurboTax tax preparation services for individuals.

Smith said that Intuit's mission is to improve the financial lives of its customers. It aims to take the accounting out of small business accounting and to empower individuals to file their own taxes.

This year, Intuit roll out its "Absolute Zero" program, which allows individuals filing with an 1040EZ form to pay absolutely nothing. The company also recently completed a contest that gave one small business an ad during this year's Super Bowl.

When asked about the Affordable Care Act, Smith called it a catalyst for TurboTax because the company has made it extremely simple to either claim a credit or pay the penalty.

Cramer called Intuit, a service he uses for his own small businesses, "a great company."

Executive Decision: Brian Cornell

In his second "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer sat down with Brian Cornell, chairman and CEO of Target (TGT) , a stock Cramer owns for his charitable trust, Action Alerts PLUS, and one that trades at just 15 times earnings with a 2.7% dividend yield.

Cornell said Target's success stems from talking to guests and understanding their needs. Over 90% of customers still prefer shop in the stores, he said, and that's why Target continues to focus on the in-store experience. Target doesn't ignore online shoppers, however, but makes it easy to shop anytime from anywhere, online or offline.

Target is also expanding into neighborhood locations, adding stores right where customers live. The company also ensures the product mix fits the location. Cornell said that college locations need different items than those in more family-oriented ones.

Cornell also touted Target's team members, calling them the best in the retail industry. He said Target invests in all of its people and it shows.

Executive Decision: Debra Cafaro

In a third "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer sat down with Debra Cafaro, chairman and CEO of Ventas (VTR) , the real estate investment trust with 1,200 properties and a 4.7% yield. 

Cafaro explained that Ventas is a leader in health care and senior housing properties thanks to a great team and a great portfolio as well as a strong balance sheet and a 17-year track record. She noted that in the areas in which Ventas has properties there is limited new development, making the company well positioned for the next wave of retiring seniors.

When asked about her guidance, Cafaro explained Ventas projected between 3% and 5% growth last year and delivered 9%. This year, she said, the company again provided conservative guidance.

Cafaro explained that Ventas spun off virtually all of its skilled nursing properties and now derives most of its revenue from private paying tenants.

Cramer said that not all health care REITs are created equal.

Lightning Round

In the Lightning Round, Cramer was bullish on American Tower (AMT) , Seagate Technology (STX) , WhiteWave Foods (WWAV) , Adobe Systems (ADBE) and AbbVie (ABBV) .

Cramer was bearish on Kinder Morgan (KMI) and Valley National Bancorp (VLY) .

No Huddle Offense

In his "No Huddle Offense" segment, Cramer explained what happened to cause the Fed to wake up to reality and put rate hikes on hold after raising them just three months earlier.

First, he said the risk clearly tilted from inflation to deflation after oil and gas, along with many other commodities, continued to fall. Second, there's been a lack of wage growth in our country, especially when factoring in government-mandated minimum wage increases.

Third, Cramer said our exporters continue to struggle with globalization and the strong U.S. dollar, something that's dominated this year's election cycle. Finally, it became clear our holiday season was dominated by the digital economy, one that doesn't play to our large retail sector.

To watch replays of Cramer's video segments, visit the Mad Money page on CNBC.

To sign up for Jim Cramer's free Booyah! newsletter with all of his latest articles and videos please click here.

At the time of publication, Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS had a position in TGT and WWAV.

More from Jim Cramer

Video: One-on-One With Pluralsight's CEO Following Its Successful IPO

Video: One-on-One With Pluralsight's CEO Following Its Successful IPO

Using Technical Analysis to Profit: Cramer's 'Mad Money' Recap (Friday 5/18/18)

Using Technical Analysis to Profit: Cramer's 'Mad Money' Recap (Friday 5/18/18)

Cramer and His Team Stick to Their Disciplines -- Even When It's Disappointing

Cramer and His Team Stick to Their Disciplines -- Even When It's Disappointing

Cramer Equates Investing to Blackjack -- and so the Market Becomes the House.

Cramer Equates Investing to Blackjack -- and so the Market Becomes the House.

Cramer's Team is Being Patient with the Financials -- Though They May Add More

Cramer's Team is Being Patient with the Financials -- Though They May Add More