How high can this stock market go? Only as high as the earnings will allow, Jim Cramer told his Mad Money viewers as he laid out his game plan Friday for next week's action.
On Monday, all eyes will be on Netflx (NFLX) and Cramer said shares will either go up instantly after the company reports or slowly over time, but either way, Netflix is a buy.
Tuesday sees a host of earnings, including Morgan Stanley (MS) and Goldman Sachs (GS) , two banks Cramer endorsed, along with Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) , which should deliver good earnings. Cramer was also bullish on semiconductor equipment maker LAM Research (LRCX) , but said not to buy UnitedHealth Group (UNH) or IBM (IBM) .
Finally on Friday, investors get a read on the oil sector from Schlumberger (SLB) and the global economy from Honeywell (HON) . Procter & Gamble (PG) will be reporting earnings and Cramer expects good growth from the consumer packaged goods giant. Not so with General Electric (GE) a stock Cramer admitted he's been dead wrong about.
Executive Decision: HP
For his "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer spoke with Dion Weisler, president and CEO of HP (HPQ) , the computer and printer maker with shares that popped 6.4% today after the company's analyst day and are up a full 46% for the year.
Weisler said HP just moved into the 3D printing market nine months ago, and already has 65 channel partners across 170 countries. He said the company is producing technologically advanced products. He said HP's strategy is to disrupt the manufacturing space with 3D printers that provide speed, quality and cost savings.
3D printing has a multitude of uses, including in medicine, Weisler said. Companies like Johnson & Johnson are already using their technology for custom components and when materials science meets printing, there are exciting possibilities.
Weisler was also bullish on HP's computer business, where he said the company is striving for beautiful design and durability.
Low Stress Tech
Investors looking for a low-stress way to invest in the red-hot semiconductor group should look no further than Texas Instruments (TXN) , Cramer told viewers. This company is the largest manufacturer of analog chips, including sensors and power amplifiers and has a lot to offer shareholders.
Cramer said the five-year chart of Texas Instruments is simply beautiful, thanks in part to the company's 2011 acquisition of National Semiconductor for $6.5 billion, which not only broadened the company's portfolio of products but also added to its consistent performance. Gross margins have also increased from 50% to near 60% over the past five years.
Texas Instruments is also shareholder friendly, having invested $32 billion in research and development, but also $25 billion for share repurchases, $9 billion for dividends and another $7 billion for acquisition. Shares trade at 21.8 times earnings, a steal for a semiconductor stock.
No Huddle Offense: Flight to Safety
In his "No Huddle Offense" segment, Cramer said in the old days, when investors fled to safety they reached for stocks like Procter & Gamble or General Mills (GIS) but in today's market, investors turn to FANG, Cramer's acronym for Facebook (FB) , Amazon.com (AMZN) , Netflix (NFLX) and Alphabet (GOOGL) .
Why do investors feel safe with these high-tech darlings? Cramer said it's because they control the attention of consumers, and that's where advertisers flock to. All of the FANG stocks are tapping into secular global trends that are not going away anytime soon. And that makes them hot commodities in the stock market as well.
In his "Homework" segment, Cramer followed up on a few stocks that stumped him during earlier shows. He said that Extreme Networks (EXTR) has been on an acquisition spree and is up 140% for the year, but has a spotty track record, which makes him wary of investing.
Cramer was bullish on Athenex (ATNX) , but only for speculation as the company doesn't have any drugs on the market yet.
Finally, Cramer said that he's taking a pass, at least for now, on Eros International (EROS) , the distributor of Indian language films. He said that while the company has 58 million users in a fast-growing market, the company's recent financial problems are worrisome.
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