Mad Money

Could these results generate virtuous ripple?

Rails have finger on pulse of economy: Cramer

(Click for video linked to a searchable transcript of this Mad Money segment)

Sometimes earnings provide valuable insights into a sector or commodity. And on Thursday, results from Joy Global revealed volumes about both.

After a sluggish 12 months, was picking up. Specifically, the company, which gets about two-thirds of its revenue from coal miners, reported a 3.7 percent rise in service bookings.

Immediately Jim Cramer interpreted the results as a sign of something bigger.

Martin Barraud | OJO Images | Getty Images

"I think Joy Global basically called the bottom in coal," Cramer said. And seconds after he drew the conclusion, Cramer thought of a stock idea.

"I immediately thought it could be bullish for the railroads," Cramer said.

That's because the rails provide the best way to transport coal. And if Joy Global's results suggest that demand for coal is rising, the rails may have a new tailwind at their backs.

Of course increased demand for coal isn't the only reason Cramer likes rails.

"They're a total slaphappy oligopoly with just four major players, two in the east, two in the west," Cramer said.

Although Cramer has gotten behind all the railroads at various times in the past on Thursday he reiterated his interest in CSX.

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Headquartered in Jacksonville, Florida, CSX is the largest coal transporter east of the Mississippi River and serves more than 120 load-outs in 9 states.

"The last time CSX reported, back in January, the company posted a 6% increase in volume, as strength in other areas offset lower volumes in coal," he said.

"If demand for coal has started to improve, the fortunes of this company should go along for the ride," Cramer said. "Plus, this is a very well-run railroad."

Call Cramer: 1-800-743-CNBC

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