Macy’s ugly fiscal Q2 is not reflective of consumer health

CNBC’s Jim Cramer said Wednesday that Macy’s earnings miss and forecast cut is not indicative of the retail landscape.

In the fashion chain’s fiscal second quarter, shareholders took home 28 cents, well short of Wall Street’s 45 cent estimates, which triggered the stock price to free fall more than 13% in the session.

“The Macy’s conference call was brutal, but I think that’s less about the state of the consumer and more about the state of the mall-based department store,” he said.

Macy’s is feeling pain from tariffs on Chinese imports and the exodus of shoppers from the malls to online retailers, and the company’s poor execution compliments investor fears about recession signals in the bond market, Cramer said. But the “Mad Money” host is convinced this is unique to the department giant because the consumer is doing fine.

The University of Michigan’s July measurement of consumer sentiment registered above 98, topping June’s reading.

“I don’t think Macy’s is all that representative of retail in general. When you’re trying to judge a whole industry, you should never take your cue from a troubled company, and right now all the department stores are indeed troubled,” Cramer said. “That’s why I’m betting the consumer might be O.K. People aren’t shopping less, they’re simply shopping at different places.”

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What’s driving the sellers?

Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

Brendan McDermid | Reuters

It doesn’t hurt that investors shave off some positions in their portfolios, but it’s a “big mistake” to dump everything, Cramer said.

“This market is now largely ruled by fear. I don’t like being scared into anything when it comes to my money or yours, and remember: panic is not a strategy,” the host said. “You don’t panic when the economy’s hanging on. You wait for more of a decline … then you can do some opportunistic buying.”

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Shopping for discounts

Executives of Revolve celebrate their IPO at the NYSE June 7, 2019.

Source: NYSE

While retail stocks have been getting hammered, the market has given investors a opportunity to buy into Revolve Group at a discount, Cramer said.

The share price of the online fashion retailer is more than half off its June high and trading under $23, its lowest point since going public earlier that month. The stock popped more than 45% in the week after its June 7 debut and the host suggested waiting to pull the trigger on a pullback.

“These [kinds of] companies are part of the reason why Macy’s is getting obliterated,” he said. “They’re … disrupting what’s left of the department stores, and it is working.”

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Green crops

Michael DeGiglio, CEO, Village Farms

Scott Mlyn | CNBC

What started as a large vegetable greenhouse developed into a pot stock.

Village Farms has been growing crops like tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers under the tutelage of founder Michael DeGiglio for three decades. The company shifted into the marijuana business a year prior to Canada’s legalization in 2018.

“For us the switch to cannabis was just, really, another agricultural crop and in that regard we saw the transformation of our assets to a much more valuable crop from produce,” the CEO said in an interview with Cramer.

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Cramer’s lightning round: Expect a ‘little more weakness’ in this group

In Cramer’s lightning round, the “Mad Money” host gives his answers to callers’ stock questions at rapid speed.

Owens Illinois: “I have to tell you I’m not encouraged by that situation. They have spent a lot of time in the wilderness, and certainly that doesn’t seem to have taught them anything. We’re going say take a pass on OI.”

STMicroelectronics: “It’s a good company. I expect it to go down tomorrow off of what Cisco had to say. It’s a good company at $15, $16 … What can I say, we expect these kinds of stocks to have a little more weakness. “

Disclosure: Cramer’s charitable trust owns shares of Cisco.

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