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Cramer: Short-sellers ambushed owners of Buffalo Wild Wings, Panera

Cramer: Short-sellers ambushed owners of Buffalo Wild Wings, Panera

Sometimes the market isn't straightforward. The Federal Reserve hinted that it could raise rates in September, and the price of oil cascaded lower. Yet, Jim Cramer still didn't see enough reasons for stocks to sell off on Wednesday.

Investors who held the stocks of Panera Bread, Buffalo Wild Wings, Caterpillar and Boeing were all surprised with earnings, and gave them no reason to sell. That meant short-sellers got the short end of the stick and had to scramble to cover their shorts.

"Short-sellers set up an ambush for the owners ... but these ambushes failed because the companies didn't give you a reason to sell. When there are no short-sellers, there is no way a short-seller can make money," the "Mad Money " host said.

Investment firm Stifel made a risky move on Tuesday when it recommended investors to sell Panera Bread on the same day the company reported earnings. Cramer found that the analyst based his call on reasonable assumptions: that the economy was slowing and the restaurant space could be the wrong place to be in a slowdown.

Put it all together, and Buffalo Wild Wings became a nightmare situation for the shorts.
Jim Cramer
Buffalo Wild Wings Restaurant
David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images

However, instead of the stock falling, the company reported an upside surprise with numbers that were sharply better than what Stifel projected.

"Those who bet against Panera were playing with the wrong thesis. The stock failed to go down, so the bears had to change direction and cover or buy back their short positions," Cramer said.

At the same time, Panera bulls jumped in and started buying, too.

The next incredible stock run came from Buffalo Wild Wings, which confirmed that same-store sales shrank by 2 percent. Yet, the company managed to actually beat the numbers through cost cuts and reduced compensation. Management also provided a credible turnaround plan. Investors found that there was no shortfall or ugly reduced forecast to panic out of the stock.

Additionally, activist Marcato recently purchased a 5.1 percent stake in Buffalo Wild Wings and has urged management to consider strategic alternatives. Cramer interpreted that to mean a possible sale.

"Put it all together, and Buffalo Wild Wings became a nightmare situation for the shorts. After this quarter, any short-seller with half a brain would cover," Cramer said.

The worst performing stocks of the entire market, Cramer said, were the airline stocks. That meant Boeing had a horrendous set-up going into its quarter, especially with the massive $2 billion account charge it took last week.

But then Boeing crushed the numbers with both a top and bottom line beat and reaffirmed full year guidance. The result was a huge move to the upside, as there was no reason to sell the stock.

"That is a long, not a short. In fact, it's a good short spoiled," Cramer said.

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