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The 'Tony Soprano' Stock

Tuesday, 6 May 2008 | 7:46 PM ET

Let’s try some college-level logic here: On-screen mafioso Tony Soprano was a part of what’s known as a “recession-proof business.” But Tony Soprano’s official title was “waste-management consultant.” Therefore, waste management is a recession-proof business.

WMI CEO Talks With Cramer
Discussing WMI's future, with David Steiner, Waste Management Inc. CEO and Mad Money host Jim Cramer.

OK, admittedly there are some gaping holes in that formula. But that doesn’t mean Waste Management , the company, isn’t “fairly recession-resistant,” CEO David Steiner told Cramer Tuesday.

Better than merely surviving during a downturn, though, Steiner said, WMI has a high fixed-cost structure in place that provides his firm with plenty of leverage to take advantage of the market when it turns up. This comes thanks, at least in part, to an expert sales team that treats pricing “like a science, not an art,” and has delivered a “hugely successful” past three years.

Another great defense WMI has in this tough environment? A fuel surcharge. So as oil prices climb, the company just passes much of the cost onto its customers.

“This is a stock that goes up over time,” Cramer said. “There are a lot of you who don’t want a lot of risk, a lot of jumping around. WMI’s for you.”

Questions for Cramer? madmoney@cnbc.com

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