What follows is Cramer’s “Game Plan” for the week of October 17.
Monday, October 17
Monday morning presents what Cramer calls a “classic banking dichotomy” between Citigroup and First Horizon , which both report before the bell.
Citi has problems all over the globe with slowing emerging markets, bad loans and a need to be able to compete in a slowing investment banking world. First Horizon, on the other hand, is a pretty well-run regional bank that doesn’t have the mortgage problems and international worries that Citi does.
Cramer said the action in these two companies will tell us whether we can finally get a separation between the “not-so-bad” regionals and the “deeply troubled” internationals.
A third bank, Wells Fargo , also reports ahead of the open. It may have national mortgage issues, but it also has growth because it is so well run, the “Mad Money” host said. He expects it will have a great quarter, but doesn’t know if it will matter since there we are still in a housing crisis.
Oil service giant Halliburton reports before the opening bell as well. Cramer thinks the entire group may sink or swim on what HAL has to say, and he thinks the company may be too conservative in its outlook. Halliburton also ran big Friday, so he thinks we may get a sell-off even if HAL is bullish.
Tuesday, October 18
Bank of America , the “most hobbled of all banks,” announces its earnings before the open. If there is any rally in the banks on Monday, Cramer said, make sure to trim before BofA reports because it remains an extremely troubled company.
But he feels better about Coca-Cola, which also reports Tuesday morning. Raw costs are down, sales are up, there’s great management and a good dividend, Cramer said.
Another winner on his list is EMC . The name –which many thinks is the cheapest growth tech stock because of its dominance of big data storage—announces its quarterly results before the bell as well.
After the bell, all eyes will be on Cramer fave Apple , which reports its first quarter after the passing of Steve Jobs. Cramer thinks we’ll see numbers rise dramatically and a break out to new highs. He also thinks we may hear estimates go as high as $45 a share for the next fiscal year.
Wednesday, October 19
The spotlight shifts back to the banks Wednesday. Morgan Stanley’s quarterly results are set to come in before the open, and Cramer’s interested to see if the company will reveal how hedged it is against Europe. He also is wondering if it will show its large earnings power. Cramer thinks Morgan Stanley is ready to play offense, and if it comes down off of BoA’s report on Tuesday, it might be a good trade.
However, he would be careful with PNC Financial Services , which announces its earnings ahead of the bell. He thinks it will remain downbeat. But he likes U.S. Bancorp , which also reports before the open. And he likes it even better if Bank of America drags down the entire financial sector.
United Technologies is the last of Wednesday’s pre-opening bell earnings reports on Cramer’s radar. He’s hoping the company gives us the vision we need to get in it, because Cramer wants to recommend it on the secondary offering that is now in the works.
After the close, American Express announces its quarterly results. Cramer wants to see revenue growth, not just a decline in loan losses for the company he calls “the best of the financials.”
Thursday, October 20
Pay-to-wait nameNucor reports ahead of the opening bell Thursday, and Cramer thinks we’ll hear things will get better for this steelmaker next year. He’ll also have his eye on his favorite tobacco stock, Philip Morris , which is terrific growth and fat dividend.
Cramer’s favorite chemical company PPG also reports before the open. While some are worried about a decline in chemicals, he isn’t worried about PPG because he thinks management’s flawless execution will continue.
He'll also be watching Union Pacific when it announces earnings ahead of the bell. If it sells off after CSX reports earlier in the week, he would buy it ahead of the quarter.
After the close, Cramer expects to hear good things when Chipotle Mexican Grill reports. He thinks the stock could be ready to run again after its recent sell-off.
Finally, Microsoft announces its results after the bell and Cramer wonders if its “smart” acquisition of Skype may be the tailwind the company needs.
Friday, October 21
When Honeywell reports before the open, Cramer expects to hear that its 5 year plan is still intact. If so, this name is a fantastic stock to anchor a portfolio, he said.
He’s also paying attention to oil service titan Schlumberger , which also reports ahead of the bell. If Halliburton knocks down the sector, Cramer suggests buying SLB head of its quarter.
Finally, Cramer wants to hear what Verizon says about the demand for the iPhone 4S when it reports before the opening bell. He thinks this could be the second wave up for Apple.
Call Cramer: 1-800-743-CNBC
When this story was published, Cramer's charitable trust owned Apple, U.S. Bancorp, Coca-Cola, Schulmberger, Bank of America and American Express
Questions for Cramer? email@example.com
Questions, comments, suggestions for the Mad Money website? firstname.lastname@example.org