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The big investing decision to be made right now

Leaders vs. laggards: Cramer digs in

After a huge run in the market recently, Jim Cramer sees that investors have hit a pivotal point in the market that could determine ultimate success or failure.

"You now have to decide when you buy something, if you want a stock that's already soared and might be tapped out, or if you want something that hasn't moved much at all and might be either suspect or simply left behind for no good reason," said the "Mad Money" host.

To set the stage, Cramer took a look at two of the biggest beneficiaries to the collapse in oil prices—retail and restaurants.

Pedestrians walk past an Urban Outfitters store in New York.
Michael Nagle | Bloomberg | Getty Images

First, there is a company like Urban Outfitters, which Cramer considers to have the strongest fundamentals in the industry. With an amazing transformation, it has become a beast with brands like Free People and Anthropologie. In fact, its stock is up 26 percent year to date.

Then there is the institutional fave, Macy's. What the heck happened to it?

This retailer has done absolutely nothing and is down 2.4 percent for the year. It has the potential to grow higher but doesn't really have a reason to. It won't report again until May and Cramer doesn't see any growth or turnaround ahead for it.

So, with that said, Cramer would rather buy the winner Urban Outfitters than a laggard like Macy's because Urban has way more potential and momentum.

As for the restaurant, this one was a tough call for Cramer. There is powerhouse Jack in the Box, which has put up some great numbers from its Mexican food cohort Qdoba, but then there is Chipotle.

Cramer has always considered Chipotle to be a best in breed stock, so which one did he go for?

"I'm a huge fan of JACK, but how can you not want to play catch up with Chipotle? I would go for the latter unless Jack in the Box pulls back hard. Chipotle can sustain itself as an investment, too," Cramer added.

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These are the types of decisions that the big dogs on Wall Street are forced to make right now.

Do you trade down to something that isn't moving, or gamble on a stock and hope it plays catch up?

"There's no cut and dry answer…it's hard to go wrong with the winning horse because horses win for a reason, and when they aren't winning, they're very hard to turn around."

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