Cramer's Mad Money - Defensive Stocks Are Immunized (10/9/13)

by: Miriam Metzinger

Stocks discussed on the in-depth session of Jim Cramer's Mad Money TV Program, Wednesday October 9.

The Fed Chairman Sideshow. Stock discussed: BioMarin (NASDAQ:BMRN)

The Dow closed up 26 points because of the announcement of the new Fed Chairman, Janet Yellin, who is well-liked by the street. However, Cramer would not expect more upside in stocks, and believes the announcement is just a sideshow to the morass in Washington. He believes that a default, which would be a calamity, has a 20% chance of happening, and while that isn't high, it is best to expect the worst and hope for the best. The uptick in stocks today doesn't mean much as long as negotiations are stalled.

BioMarin (BMRN) is down 11% because it is raising equity. However, Cramer thinks the negativity in the stock is baked in, but also believes that biotechs are going to get hard in the next few days.

Alcoa's (NYSE:AA) Surprisingly Rosy Picture

Alcoa (AA) might have been booted from the Dow, but it still is a bellwether on the economy, since aluminum has myriad uses. Alcoa has two businesses: aluminum production and aluminum engineering. Since the commodity has been in glut for years, the first business is not doing well, but the engineering business is on fire. Alcoa management said that while the government shutdown is stunning global clients, demand for products is increasing dramatically in China, and not even the government fiasco can create an obstacle to the substantial aerospace backlog that is good news for Alcoa. This stock deserves to be higher, but unfortunately, given the aluminum glut and the ongoing controversy in the U.S. government, "Deserves has nothing to do with it."

Costco (NASDAQ:COST), ConAgra (NYSE:CAG), Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO), Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG), Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ). Other stocks mentioned: Gannett (NYSE:GCI), Hercules Offshore (NASDAQ:HERO), National Oilwell Varco (NYSE:NOV)

Defensive stocks are a good sector for shelter from the U.S. government storm. While they are likely to drop along with other stocks, defensives will be the first to bounce back. Cramer discussed Costco (COST) which reported disappointing earnings, but the stock flew back upward. Cramer thinks this shows that defensive stocks (since Costco sells low cost consumer products) are immunized against downside. ConAgra (CAG) rose on news of a takeover bid and Coca-Cola (KO), which has not been performing well of late, may show signs of life.

Cramer would not necessarily buy the above-mentioned stocks, but two defensive stocks to buy at the current level are Procter & Gamble (PG) and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ). Both companies have improved management. JNJ has a strong balance sheet and drugs in the pipeline. PG is taking market share and will benefit from a falling dollar.

Cramer took some calls:

Gannett (GCI) is making the transition from print to TV, and Cramer thinks it may be a buy on that strategy.

Hercules Offshore (HERO) is not a stock Cramer would buy when there is best-of-breed National Oilwell Varco (NOV) which is splitting itself up.


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