Jim Cramer's Mad Money In-Depth Stock Picks, Dec. 21

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Includes: ATVI, EAT, FIZ, GMKT, JSDA, M, MNST, NUAN, RVBD
by: Miriam Metzinger

Stocks discussed in the in-depth session of Jim Cramer’s Mad Money TV program, Thursday December 21. Click on a stock ticker for more analysis:

Jones Soda (NASDAQ:JSDA), National Beverage (FIZ) and Hansen Natural (HANS)

Hansen Natural "ran out of fizz last summer," says Cramer, who now likes Jones Soda since it is "just beginning to run." Although the stock has been doing well, it is not too late to buy, and Cramer says he would pick some up on Monday afternoon after Thursday's buyers throw it back. Jones is a "relatively unknown stock" and the two analysts who cover Jones give it a "neutral" rating, but Cramer thinks that the company will have 100% earnings-per-share growth by next year thanks to the fact that retailers like Jones for its high premiums. Cramer thinks that Jones is a good regional to national story and has a "cultlike following" which is growing. Finally, Jones' winning deal with National Beverage will save Jones money. Cramer likes this company because it not only knows how to make a good soda, it also knows how to distribute its product.

Related: Clyde Milton thinks that Jones Soda's new beverage may compete with Coke

Riverbed Technology (NASDAQ:RVBD)

Since Riverbed has climbed 80% since Cramer's recommendation in October, he suggests investors ring the register a bit, but to hold their position. The company "has a product that saves businesses a lot of money on their bandwidth costs and infrastructure costs," and while it is not a "hot" stock, since of the nine analysts that cover it, there are six holds and three buys, Cramer believes "they will be pressured to change their view." He predicts Riverbed will earn 25 cents a share as its market grows and comments that it has a 90% win rate with its WAN contracts. In addition, the company has beaten its estimates every quarter since its IPO.

Sell Block: Federated Department Stores (FD), Activision (NASDAQ:ATVI), Gmarket (GMKT), Nuance Communications (NASDAQ:NUAN), HealthSouth (NYSE:HLS)

Cramer regrets having recommended FD and says that it is a sell. Since ATVI is up 7%, he would ring the register. Cramer would take a "schnitzel," or sell a portion of a stock while retaining a position, on Gmarket, since it is up 20%, but "under no circumstances" should anyone buy Nuance, since it is moving into speech recognition, and Cramer does not think this is a good business. HealthSouth which is selling off its divisions to fund its core business is "selling off its winners to fund its loser," and Cramer would get rid of the stock.

Related: In early December, Federated was reporting strong sales.

CEO Interview: Douglas Brooks of Brinker International (NYSE:EAT)

When asked if people should be worried about his company, Douglas Brooks replied, "It has been a tough macroeconomic environment," Brooks responded. "But what we've tried to emphasize is innovation ... and we've been trying to work on value." He went on to discuss the company's share buyback program, its dividend increase, and new restaurants opening nationally and internationally. Cramer says that Brinker has a "limited" downside and would buy the stock.

Related: Michelle Leder questions Douglas Brooks' generous bonus.

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