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Cramer: Apple trades like an auto parts company

The averages bounced back on Wednesday, further proving to Jim Cramer that stocks can't stay in the doghouse very long before they break out.

"Today is the day when many stocks that had been languishing or puttering or just plain going down finally awoke from their slumber and regained their gusto as part of a broader move higher," the "Mad Money" host said.

One of those stocks was Apple, which took a hit when Credit Suisse recently reported a brutal forecast reduction based on weak supply chain orders by its team in Asia. At the time, Cramer rolled his eyes on the report, assuming it was yet another research firm attempting to discern weakness in Apple's product sales by measuring components.

Cramer has seen this happen countless times during Apple's historic run from generational lows in March 2009. For every new product, cellphone change or freshening, Cramer has heard a story of supply-chain weakness from "Asian teams."





Shoppers at an Apple store in New York
Scott Mlyn | CNBC
Shoppers at an Apple store in New York
"For the record, I like hearing from Tim Cook's Asia team a lot more than the Asia team of UBS or Credit Suisse or whatever other firm might convince you to trade Apple and not own it" -Jim Cramer

But on Wednesday morning Goldman Sachs released a research note with an upgrade to its conviction-buy list that Cramer found totally refreshing. Goldman's way of looking at Apple was as a company that is transforming from a hardware play into more of a service provider. This includes an installed base that will have recurring revenues, and Cramer thought this piece made a lot of sense.

Meanwhile, there were also reports from another Apple supplier in China that said the phone business is actually quite strong, disputing the "Asian team" channel checks from Credit Suisse. The whole thing reminded Cramer of when Tim Cook sent him an email this summer to confirm China sales were very strong.

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"For the record, I like hearing from Tim Cook's Asia team a lot more than the Asia team of UBS or Credit Suisse or whatever other firm might convince you to trade Apple and not own it," Cramer said.

In fact, Cramer thinks Apple is so darned cheap that it trades more like some metal-bending auto parts company. Selling at just 10 times earnings, that is a significant discount to the average stock on the S&P 500.

Ultimately, Goldman Sachs said investors would pay up to $163 for Apple. At those levels it would still be trading at a discount to the average stock, despite the fact that it has such an amazing balance sheet and status as the world's largest company.

"At that $163 level, it will trade more like an aerospace parts company than a bumper or a dashboard company, and I guess we will have to be happy with that," Cramer added.

The comeback story wasn't just limited to Apple, though. Cramer also saw high-quality companies like Allergan finally wake up as investors realized this is not the same roll-up structure as Valeant.

Other stocks on Cramer's radar were Jack in the Box and Costco.

"After today, maybe the bottom line is that the market's lovey-dovey stock list, the ones that are anointed by big money managers, is expanding back to companies that have delivered great results but have somehow taken a third-row backseat to FANG," Cramer said.

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