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Cramer's Cure for a Market Hangover

After the trauma of a 416-point drop in the market, Cramer likes to go fishing – bottom fishing, actually. He has 25 years of experience angling through the wrecks of portfolios that belonged to less experienced fisherman and women, and today he’s going to share his secrets with you.

First, fishing for bottoms is more of a science than an art. Second, get your game plan ready. Third, and most importantly, understand that not all stocks bottom at the same time. Thousands of stocks don’t all hit bottom as one and then start bouncing back at the same time. Bottoms happen by sector, one at a time, and usually by thirds.

Cramer believes there was already a bottom for about one-third of the market today, and some parts of that already bottomed yesterday. But two-thirds of the market are still up for grabs. Today’s show is about how to play each third.

The bottom today was made up of defensive consumer products – all the things people need to buy whether they’re employed or not. A walk down any grocery store isle will give you an idea of what Cramer is talking about. The smart money knows to buy the supermarket and medicine-cabinet stocks when a slowdown hits – and that’s what we’re seeing now.

Cramer says Procter & Gamble has already rebounded, so it’s not worth buying into. But Colgate, Clorox, General Mills and Heinz are all good picks right now. And if you really want a recession-proof stock, buy Altria (Jim’s charitable trust owns MO.)

As for the medicine chest, stay out of pharmaceuticals, Cramer says. Merck, Pfizer and Eli Lilly are already expensive and they don’t have much room to run with patent expiration difficulties and the looming threat of a Democratic White House. Instead, look toward biotech. Cramer’s recommending Celgene and Gilead for their stellar products and pipelines.

Bottom Line: The market bottoms in thirds – the first bottom is in defensive supermarket stocks like Heinz and Altria, and in equally defensive medical plays – here Cramer prefers biotech to big pharma. Stay tuned for more on how to play the other two-thirds of the market.

Questions? Comments? madmoney@cnbc.com

Symbol
Price
 
Change
%Change
CELG
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CL
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CLX
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GILD
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HNZ
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LLY
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MO
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MRK
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PFE
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PG
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