It's been eight years since the stock market bottomed in March of 2009, and Jim Cramer told his Mad Money viewers Thursday that he's sick and tired of hearing that the rally was only made possible by the super-low interest rates provided by the Federal Reserve.
In fact, when Cramer looked at the biggest stock success stories since the market lows, only one of the top 10 had anything at all to do with the Fed.
The biggest winner in the S&P 500 since 2009 was Incyte (INCY) , up 6,300%. This company surely had nothing to do with the Fed. Second on the list was United Rentals (URI) , up 3,700%. No Fed here either, Cramer said. It's simply cheaper to rent heavy equipment than own it.
Third, forth and fifth on the list were Regeneron (REGN) , Wyndham Worldwide (WYN) and Alaska Airlines (ALK) , up 2,900%, 2,700% and 2,400% respectively. Cramer struggled to see how the Fed influenced any of these companies either.
Rounding out the top 10 were Netflix (NFLX) , Priceline (PCLN) , CBS (CBS) , American Airlines (AAL) and finally Fifth Third Bancorp (FITB) -- so, yes, as a bank it did benefit from from the Fed's assistance.
But overall, Cramer said, these companies were in exceptional markets with terrific products and management and great execution. They all deserved their gains and we certainly should not give the Fed's monetary policy all the credit.
Executive Decision: Columbia Sportswear
For his "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer spoke with Tim Boyle, CEO of Columbia Sportswear (COLM) , the outdoor apparel and footwear maker with shares that are down by 8% over the past 12 months while much of the U.S. is emerging from a very warm winter season.
Boyle said with so many apparel brands out there, you really need to differentiate yourself -- and for Columbia, they do that with innovation. They've created numerous high-tech fabrics to both repel water and still breathe to keep the wearer comfortable.
Boyle also reminded viewers that while it was a snowless winter in the Northeast U.S., it still does snow in other places in the world and Columbia is turning around its business in Europe and elsewhere. He also touted his company's partnership with Walt Disney (DIS) and the "Star Wars" franchise.
Turning to the topic of a border tax, Boyle noted that such a tax is bad for both consumers and those who do business overseas. Columbia derives 40% of its revenues from overseas.
Cramer said that he views Columbia as a tech company that also makes clothing and he continues to love their products and the stock.
Cramer and the AAP team know what it would take for them to re-evaluate a potential purchase of Starbucks (SBUX) . Find out what they're telling their investment club members with a free trial subscription to Action Alerts PLUS.
Where Do Oil Prices Go From Here?
When you see all of the lemmings running to one side of the trade, you should be running toward the other, Cramer told viewers, as he gave a tip of the hat to colleague and frequent "Off The Charts" guest, Carley Garner.
Fans of "Mad Money" may recall in January, when Garner predicted a pending collapse in oil prices, as large speculators had built up an unprecedented long position in the commodity. Indeed, some 525,000 oil contracts bet that oil prices would rise and every one of those contracts was dead wrong.
Where do oil prices go from here? Cramer said that he sees oil heading down a few more dollars before the market corrects itself. New technology in the oil patch allows drillers to turn on and off production almost on a dime, he noted, something that was impossible just a few years ago.
Meanwhile, on Real Money, Cramer says investors should use this break to buy the best Permian stocks. Check out his strategies with a free trial subscription to Real Money.
Executive Decision: Tech Data
In his second "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer sat down with Bob Dutkowsky, CEO of Tech Data (TECD) , the technology supplier that posted a 28-cents-a-share earnings beat, only to see shares fall, and then rebound, 4.2%.
Dutkowsky admitted that their recent acquisition did ratchet up Tech Data's debt levels, but they're committed to paying down that debt and he's very comfortable in their ability to do so. He said the acquisition not only balanced out Tech Data's exposure to Europe, but also added channels into Asia that they simply didn't have before.
When asked about technology spending, Dutkowsky said things are flat overall but with pockets of strength, including the cloud -- which is growing double digits -- and also with small- and medium-sized businesses. He noted that Tech Data is focusing on what he called the "third platforms" which follow mainframes and PCs and include the cloud and big data analytics.
Cramer said he views the acquisition as transformative and exactly what will turn on the jets for Tech Data later in the year.
The Lightning Round
Am I Diversified?
In the "Am I Diversified" segment, Cramer spoke with callers and responded to tweets sent via Twitter to @JimCramer to see if investors' portfolios have what it takes for today's markets.
Cramer said that Twilio and Nvidia were too similar and he would replace Twilio with Verizon (VZ) , which has a 4.6% yield.
This portfolio also had too much tech and Cramer said it needed UnitedHealth and Verizon.
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