Stocks discussed on the in-depth session of Jim Cramer's Mad Money TV Program, Monday March 28.
Good Healthcare Stocks Are Hard to Find: HCA Holdings (NYSE:HCA)
There is a shortage of quality healthcare stocks as money managers are desperate to find good plays in this space to compete with the benchmark S&P 500, comprised 11% of healthcare. However, most healthcare stocks are not strong performers, particularly pharma. Cramer recommended the not-so-fresh IPO name HCA Holdings (HCA), the largest non-governmental hospital company in the U.S. with 164 hospitals, 106 surgery centers in 20 states and in England. Cramer doesn't usually recommend IPOs after the deal, but since HCA Holdings was a much-hyped offering that was difficult to get into early, and since the stock is up only 10% from its recent IPO, the stock is still worth buying.
A significant catalyst for HCA is the conclusion of the quiet period, when brokers will be able to discuss the stock and the Wall Street promotion machine should bring the shares up. As analysts cover the stock, Cramer expects plenty of buy ratings. Cramer doesn't usually like private equity IPOs, since they are usually a vehicle for private equity to get rid of its debt, but the stock has a compelling enough story to make it attractive. It is one of the few healthcare names that can benefit from Obamacare, since the HCA does well when more people are insured, and as the economy improves, more patients will actually be able to pay their bills. HCA is the largest player in a highly fragmented hospital space and should gain market share. While the company has significant debt, its cash flow is huge, $1.8 billion last year, and is a good "better balance sheet" play. Best of all HCA doesn't trade at a premium and its stock price is in-line with the rest of the hospital group, even though it is a best-of-breed company. Cramer declares HCA Holdings a "buy, buy, buy."
Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI)
Conventional wisdom says that oil is going to keep going higher while consumer discretionary plays will suffer. The nail in the coffin seemed to be the disappointing quarter from Darden Restaurants (DRI), which sent the stock down 5%. This is bad news if one assumes that oil will keep going higher. If oil has peaked for the year, consumer discretionary names will be headed higher. Darden might be more of a buying opportunity than a disappointment
The quarter wasn't so disappointing, given the numbers, with a 3 cent earnings beat, a 5.7% rise in revenues, and same store sales increasing at 1.6-2%, which is not bad in a tough environment. Red Lobster's performance was better than expected and Longhorn Steakhouse is a real growth opportunity, with an impressive 6.1% increase in same store sales. The crux of Darden's problem was lagging same store sales at the Olive Garden and a flawed promotion strategy which focused too heavily on exotic dishes rather than favorite menu items that have more popular appeal. What sent the stock tumbling were "throw away" comments by management about a fragile consumer environment and the effect of rising gas prices on consumer confidence. Cramer thought these remarks were not meant to be the main message management wanted to give, but nonetheless, The Street blew them out of proportion.
Cramer thinks this past quarter for Darden was a hiccup rather than a full blown flu. The company also suffered from declining business from the harsh winter. The proposal of raising the dividend from 2.8% to 3.6% was a show of confidence that should have trumped those fatal throwaway comments from management. The company is selling at a multiple of 12 with a 12% growth rate. If gas prices stay steady, Darden will see some upside, and if prices at the pump decline, Darden will soar.
Cramer took some calls:
Coca Cola (NYSE:KO) gave a terrific presentation. "I can't tell you how positive I am on Coca Cola," Cramer said, especially with its strong cash flow and a dividend that will most likely be raised.
Buffalo Wild Wings (NASDAQ:BWLD) is smart about its cash flow and is "expanding at a measured and terrific pace."
CEO Interview: Emmanuel Chirico, Phillips Van Heusen (NYSE:PVH). Other stock mentioned: Nike (NYSE:NKE)
After a terrific consumer spending number, there is reason to be bullish on retail, particularly if oil prices decline. Cramer thinks Phillips Van Heusen (PVH), owner of Izod, Calvin Klein Bass and most recently Tommy Hilfiger is a good way to play the resurgence of the consumer. A third of men's dress shirts in stores are PVH and half of the ties; "This is something like an anti-trust problem," commented Cramer. While The Street initially panned the Tommy HIlfiger acquisition, Cramer says it has been "just plain brilliant" and has expanded the company's reach in Europe. The company reported an 11 cent earnings beat with raised guidance. While the stock has declined 16% since Cramer recommended it in December, the stock may soon move to the upside. It now trades at a multiple of 13 with a 14% growth rate, and is a "bargain."
Prior to PVH's strong quarter, analysts cut numbers, but CEO Emmanuel Chirico explained that analysts didn't understand the power of the Tommy HIlfiger acquisition or the continued strength of Calvin Klein. The Street extrapolated Nike's (NKE) problem with raw costs to PVH, but Chirico explained the company is dealing with higher commodity prices by raising prices on fashion items and cutting costs by using alternative fabrics and looking for cheaper labor sources. While the CEO admitted the company may be working on shorter margins, it will adjust operating margins.
Cramer asked why PVH raised guidance for the year but not for the next quarter, and Chirico responded that PVH is spending $8 million on the launch of CK One and is still working on the transition of its Hilfiger acquisition. Europe has been a strong market for the company with holiday sales up 12% year over year, the order book for Spring rising 10% and Fall orders up 15%. Tommy Hilfiger is a powerful brand in Europe, is expanding in Germany and Spain and has seen growth in Italy and France up 25-30%.
Four of PVH's Japanese stores are out of operation for 3-4 months, but the CEO explained that Japan comprises only 9% of the company's revenues. Cramer said PVH "is a solid and a long-term buy."
Saved by Globalization: Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT), Emerson (NYSE:EMR), Boeing (NYSE:BA), FedEx (NYSE:FDX), UPS (NYSE:UPS), Coca Cola (KO), Freeport McMoRan (NYSE:FCX), Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), eBay (NASDAQ:EBAY), Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX)
With such terrible news in housing and employment, how can it be that stocks keep moving higher? With certain stocks, "globalization saves the day." Many countries located in the U.S. are "barely American companies" since they are driven by overseas rather than domestic growth. Cramer thinks the following stocks will continue to benefit from overseas strength: Caterpillar (CAT), Emerson (EMR), Boeing (BA), Fed Ex (FDX), UPS (UPS) and Coca Cola (KO).
Cramer took some calls:
Freeport McMoRan (FCX) Cramer likes Freeport and the copper story but he warned the stock has had a big run. It will go higher for the long-term, but for now, it might "mark time."
Jim Cramer was up 31% in 2009. Click here now to sign up for Jim's Action Alerts PLUS and trade alongside him. Special discount for Seeking Alpha users.
Get Cramer's Picks by email - it's free and takes only a few seconds to sign up.