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Not all earnings beats are created equal, Jim Cramer told his Mad Money viewers Tuesday, some are a lot more equal than others. That's why the number and magnitude of earnings beats can control the entire direction of the markets on a given day.
Cramer said today's biggest earnings beat was Burlington Stores (BURL) , which has a history of beating expectations and raising guidance, and didn't disappoint today, sending shares up 15.9%. Burlington's earnings were so good, Cramer ranked it up there with TJX Stores (TJX) , Ross Stores (ROST) and Ulta Beauty (ULTA) .
Another earnings beat came from Analog Devices (ADI) , a semiconductor that's underappreciated by analysts but is following in the path of Broadcom (AVGO) and NXP Semiconductor (NXPI) and diversifying itself into a powerhouse.
Cramer also highlighted upside surprises from Dollar Tree (DLTR) , which rose 8.1% on the day, and Cracker Barrel (CBRL) , up 5.7%. He said both of these companies had lowered expectations earlier in the year but then came roaring back.
Finally, Signet Jewelers (SIG) reported earnings that were not as negative as everyone expected, which was a surprise, as were the earnings from Palo Alto Networks (PANW) , which fell 13% on the day after the company reported results that were worse than expected.
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Executive Decision: Home Depot
For his "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer spoke with Carol Tomé, CFO of Home Depot (HD) , a 15-year veteran in the home-improvement space and someone Cramer called "the best in the business."
Tomé said that Home Depot has only been selling holiday items since 2006, but this year it will sell over 2.8 million Christmas trees and more than eight million poinsettias -- and expects to have a knockout Black Friday.
Tomé added that the secret to Home Depot's success has always been talking to consumers and giving them what they want. In the past, growth was driven by opening new stores and adding square footage, but today, she said, the company doesn't need new stores and instead focuses on offering new products and services at the stores they already have.
Home Depot continues to invest in the categories that are working the best, such as appliances, and where they are continuing to take share from rivals, Tomé said.
Cramer asked what keeps Tomé going after decades in the business.
She said that doing what she loves has been key to her success. Adding to that success has been working with an amazing team and speaking with experts in the business, all to help formulate an informed point of view on where the industry is headed.
Tomé said that when home prices are rising, people view their home as investments and are willing to spend more on them.
She said she does not see the election results has having a material impact on Home Depot's forecasts.
When asked about growth, Tomé said that the total addressable market in the U.S. is $550 billion and Home Depot only has a 20% share, leaving lots of room for growth. She was also bullish on the company's business in Mexico.
Cramer and Tomé also discussed Home Depot's commitment to shareholders: The company has purchased over $65 billion worth of its own shares, and is committed to helping the communities it serves, with rapid responses to hurricanes and other natural disasters.
Off The Charts: VIX
In the "Off The Charts" segment, Cramer checked in with colleague Mark Sebastian to see where the markets might be headed next with their post-election rally.
In times of euphoria, investors need a gut check, Cramer said, which is why Sebastian studies the CBOE Volatility Index, also known as the fear index.
Looking at a chart of the S&P 500 and the VIX, Sebastian noted that all appears to be going well. As the markets were in decline from September through November, the VIX was slowly rising, as it should, and post-election, as stocks rose, the VIX has been on the decline.
Sebastian also looked at the VVIX index, a gauge of the volatility of the VIX itself. Here, he said, the VVIX was confirming that the Trump rally has staying power and indeed, might still be in the early innings.
Executive Decision: Corbus Pharmaceuticals
In his second "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer spoke with Dr. Yuval Cohen, CEO of Corbus Pharmaceuticals (CRBP) , the biotech with a stock that's up a whopping 380% so far this year.
Cohen commented on the recent Phase II results for Resunab, his company's drug to treat cystic fibrosis and systemic sclerosis. He said that while Phase II studies are small and the first to be conducted in actual patients, the signal received from Resunab results was stronger than expected.
When asked about the need to raise additional money to continue with their trials, Cohen noted that Corbus is fortunate to have sponsors for their trials, including a $5 million grant from the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation to study Resunab.
Cramer said while Corbus remains speculative, the company's outlook continues to appear promising.
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