"I want you to be prepared ahead of the Fed's move. That means taking evasive action, because the reward isn't worth the risk, at least at these elevated prices. I say another, better time will come and you want some cash ready to take advantage of it," the "Mad Money" host said.
While the Fed could decide not to raise rates, Cramer wasn't willing to chance it. He estimated that investors could miss out on a 2 to 3 percent rally. But considering that Fed Chief Janet Yellen and Vice Chair Stanley Fischer both openly talked about raising rates in Jackson Hole, and Boston Fed President Eric Rosengren joined the chorus on Friday, the risk of a hike is too great for Cramer to chase a 2 to 3 percent gain in the averages.
Cramer warned that the Fed does not seem concerned about the economic data. It is worried that rates are at rare lows, which is untenable considering the unemployment rate and lack of overseas worries. It stayed on hold already because of China, oil and Brexit. Nothing overseas will stop it this time.
"Accept it and act accordingly, even if you think it won't happen or it shouldn't happen," Cramer warned.
For investors who think the Fed will raise rates, the banks could be the biggest winners. Cramer considers Citigroup the safest big bank to own. He has his eye on the analyst meeting. If the stock goes higher, it will tell the temperature of how the market feels about two rate hikes before the end of the year.