Shares of the media and entertainment giant fell 6.94%, hitting a fresh 52-week low during the session. However, the “Mad Money” host said he would not shy away from the stock because its steep decline appeared tied to Netflix‘s forecast of slowing subscriber growth.
Netflix’s outlook — offered Thursday night when the company reported earnings — spooked investors, and the company’s shares plunged 21.8% Friday.
“I want to own the stocks of longstanding, great Americans that are brought down in a guilt-by-association fiasco, and that’s exactly what happened to the stock of Disney today,” Cramer said, while noting he was prevented from adding to his charitable trust’s position in Disney on Friday because he mentioned the stock on TV in the morning. Cramer’s ethics policy is that he waits 72 hours before executing a trade in a stock that he discusses on CNBC’s TV shows.
Cramer’s trust bought back into Disney in September, about three months after exiting its position entirely for the first time in 16 years. The trust added to the stock in late November and then again in December.
Cramer acknowledged Friday that he’s “been too early” on Disney, alluding to the fact the stock is trading lower than when the trust made its buys.
“But it’s time to stop conflating speculative stories with investment-grade stories. Many stocks that have bee annihilated here belong to companies that don’t have much in the way of earnings, companies that mostly trade on hype or hope,” Cramer said.
He said he sees a range of speculative assets — including cryptocurrencies and stocks that went public through a reverse merger with a special purpose acquisition company — that deserve to be struggling right now, as Wall Street prepares for likely interest rate hikes from the Federal Reserve.
“But you can’t just extrapolate the weakness of one company which has done very well, Netflix, with a whole host of other companies with great brand names that make fantastic products and generate good earnings, like Disney,” Cramer said.
“I am not saying that Netflix isn’t worth owning. At some price, it sure will be,” he added. “I am saying that there are plenty of high-quality companies that were poleaxed today because of Netflix, and those were the best ones to buy.”
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