Cramer's Mad Money - Steve Ballmer Is Too Hard On Himself (11/21/13)

by: Miriam Metzinger

Stocks discussed on the in-depth session of Jim Cramer's Mad Money TV Program, Thursday November 21.

Steve Ballmer Is Too Hard On Himself. Stocks discussed: Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), AT&T (NYSE:T)

The most revolutionary device to hit the living room is about to appear: Xbox One. This console uses artificial intelligence and cutting edge technology, and even the competition is impressed. Ironically, retiring Microsoft (MSFT) CEO, Steve Ballmer, is more reviled than revered. He is the butt of jokes on the TV show "South Park," and even blames himself for problems at Microsoft; "I am the emblem of an older era, and I need to move on ... We need to break a pattern, and let's face it. I was a pattern." Some may think that Ballmer is too hard on himself, but in tech, falling behind the way Microsoft trailed its peers for a good amount of time is deadly. However, with Microsoft up 40% for the year while many of its competitors are up only single digits might indicate that Ballmer is, according to Cramer, "being ridiculously harsh" about his performance, and Cramer added that other CEOs in tech need to answer for the lack of performance in their stocks. MSFT did rally 10% on the announcement of Ballmer's departure, but Cramer doesn't think Ballmer's tenure at Microsoft was quite the catastrophe others seem to see it as; "I am proud I never put him on the Wall of Shame."

Cramer took some calls:

AT&T (T) is not doing much at all. It has to show growth or make an acquisition. AT&T is like a bond with a little more upside; there are much better stocks out there.

Perrigo (NASDAQ:PRGO), Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX), Dollar Tree (NASDAQ:DLTR), Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), Whirlpool (NYSE:WHR), Jarden (NYSE:JAH), Costco (NASDAQ:COST), Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX), Chegg (NYSE:CHGG), Kandi Technologies (NASDAQ:KNDI), Polaris Industries (NYSE:PII)

The Dow soared 109 points, and it seems to have "forgotten" about the Fed minutes. Cramer notes that, regardless of what the Fed report says, stocks tend to decline when Fed minutes are discussed, because people fear a change in policy. Fed Chair Janet Yellin has made it abundantly clear that she plans to stay the course set by Ben Bernanke, her predecessor; it is unlikely the Fed will raise rates as long as unemployment is high. Meanwhile, much of retail is struggling, as indicated even by trade-down play, Dollar Tree (DLTR). However, a bit of homework into the conference calls can help one discover what consumers are buying: private label brands, appliances and online movies (rather than going out). On this information, Cramer would consider buying Perrigo (PRGO), Amazon (AMZN), Whirlpool (WHR), Jarden (JAH) and Netflix (NFLX). Regardless of the environment, Google (GOOG), Starbucks (SBUX) and Costco (COST) should go higher.

Cramer took some calls:

Chegg (CHGG) is a stock Cramer would hold onto because it has value and is too low. "I don't know if you should buy more, but don't sell it."

Kandi Technologies (KNDI) is up a lot. Cramer prefers Polaris (PII).

CEO Interview: Steve Singh, Concur Technologies (NASDAQ:CNQR)

Concur Technologies (CNQR) is a $5 billion company that handles corporate travel and automates expense management. The company trades at a very rich multiple of 90 compared to its 20% growth rate, and it has risen 42% for the year. However, the company has unique technology for corporate travel and accelerated revenue growth. CEO Steve Singh is optimistic about growth opportunities, and feels that revenue could grow to $10 billion a year. Concur is investing in developing its business; "It is impossible to invest too much." Its core platform is called TripLink and manages every aspect of corporate travel. Currently only 10% of expense accounts are handled automatically, so there is room for expansion. Singh commented on how beneficial the growing oil and gas industry in the U.S. is for CNQR's business, since travel in this industry is frequent and often done at the last minute. Singh does not feel there is significant competition in this area, and feels that much of tech today is not a "zero sum game," but various players can work together.


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