No matter what you think of President Trump, at least part of his agenda is working, Jim Cramer told his Mad Money viewers Wednesday.
Investors shouldn't discount what's coming out of Washington, D.C.: The combination of lower tax rates, deregulation and a tougher stance on trade, combined with a booming global economy, means our already strong economy could get even stronger -- and that's a beautiful thing to behold.
The skeptics would have you believe that corporate tax cuts will only flow to the rich as dividends and buybacks are for shareholders. But that's only part of the story, Cramer said, as Apple (AAPL) proved today when it announced it will directly invest $350 billion into the U.S. over the next five years. That amount is bigger than the Marshall Plan that rebuilt Europe after World War II, Cramer noted, and it shows what a company can do in a favorable economic environment.
Apple also said that it's increasing its previously announced advanced manufacturing fund to $5 billion and the company will give 98% of its employees $2,500 in additional stock options.
For much of the day, Apple stock traded lower, as Wall Street did its best to value the benefits of being a good corporate citizen. But Cramer said these investments in America will only have a multiplying effect, and he continues to stress that you should own, and not trade, Apple for the long term.
The financials are the most important leadership group in the stock market, Cramer told viewers, as he took a fresh look at the banks now that we've seen all of the earnings reports.
JPMorgan Chase (JPM) , an Action Alerts PLUS holding, remained the best of the group, in Cramer's book, as the company saw strong earnings, rising net interest margins and the biggest windfall from tax relief. JPMorgan trades at just 2.1 times its tangible book value.
Cramer said Bank of America (BAC) remained the most levered to rising interest rates and also saw strong growth this quarter in all of the key metrics. Shares of Bank of America trade for just 1.85 times book value.
The best value bank is Citigroup (C) , which was not as strong as the others, but trades at just 1.28 times its book value.
Wells Fargo (WFC) is still trying to get its house in order, Cramer said, and while he likes the prospects for the bank's recovery, it may still be too early for a stock that trades at twice its book value.
As for Goldman Sachs (GS) , Cramer said while the investment banking side of their business continues to be on fire, the trading side saw steep declines. Goldman is also not a big beneficiary of tax cuts, which makes it not one of Cramer's favorites.
Cramer and the AAP team say Broadcom (AVGO) needs to walk away from the Qualcomm (QCOM) bid. Find out what they're telling their investment club members and get in on the conversation with a free trial subscription to Action Alerts PLUS.
Consumer Spend Is the Wild Card
The American consumer is alive and well, but she's still under-appreciated on Wall Street. That means there are values to be had, especially if you're patient.
Not that long ago, Tiffany (TIF) was struggling, hurt by a strong dollar. But recently, same-store sales were up 3%, as the dollar is weakening and international shoppers are returning.
Home improvement remains strong, with Home Depot (HD) at new all-time highs and Lowe's (LOW) seeing a big move last week. Cramer was also bullish on video games, with Activision Blizzard (ATVI) , an Action Alerts PLUS favorite.
There's no need to rush into any of these names, Cramer stressed, so you can wait for the next market pullback to start a position.
Over on Real Money, get more of Cramer's insights about consumer spending with a free trial subscription and his column on what's next for this market.
Executive Decision: Tellurian
For his "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer checked back in with Charif Souki, co-founder and chairman of Tellurian Inc. (TELL) , the company aiming to build a low-cost, global natural gas business.
Souki said his biggest problem right now is infrastructure. He said America is one of, if not the, lowest-cost producer of natural gas in the world and we have a never-ending supply of it. But we lack the infrastructure to get that gas to the water where it can be liquified and exported. There's clearly a disconnect between what it costs to produce and what the world is willing to pay for natural gas, he said, and that's the gap Tellurian aims to fill.
Souki added that the U.S. needs to invest $150 billion over the next five years to be able to meet the demand that Tellurian and others could fill.
When asked whether deregulation is having any effect on his industry, Souki said, in a word, "no." He said that the only difference thus far is that this administration brags about oil and gas while the previous one didn't.
Executive Decision: Splunk
In his second "Executive Decision" segment, Cramer also sat down again with Doug Merritt, president and CEO of Splunk (SPLK) , the data analytics provider with shares that rose 62% in 2017.
Merritt said that big data continues to grow and is what powers today's businesses. Machine data is one important segment of big data and it's where Splunk is a a leader in both security and analytics.
Only Splunk has the scale to handle petabytes of data every day, but also the ease of use to allow multiple departments to mine that data in different ways to get the information and insights they need. In the case of Carnival (CCL) , the cruise line uses Slunk to monitor their ship systems data, looking for potential failures before they occur instead of as, or after, they occur.
Cramer reiterated his recommendation of Splunk.
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