In such a strong market, Jim Cramer finds it fruitful to single out the big winners, the stocks that, rather than being lifted by the market's strength, are actually driving it.
Intuit's stock has rallied almost 25 percent year to date, with TurboTax taking huge market share from competitors. Since Tax Day, shares of Intuit have climbed over 20 basis points.
"Look, I'm not complaining. I've been a big fan of Intuit and its terrific CEO, Brad Smith, for a long time," Cramer said. "But if you believe that the Trump administration can pass some kind of major tax reform bill, something that could simplify the tax code dramatically, then Intuit's one of the last stocks that should be roaring here. This is an anti-Trump stock. Yet it keeps going higher."
To make sense of Intuit's move, Cramer delved into its business to see what keeps the stock ticking higher.
Watch the full segment here:
The California-based company has three main businesses. The first and main arm is the consumer segment that produces the tax preparation program TurboTax, along with personal finance platforms like Mint.
The second segment is Intuit's small business ecosystem, which produces software like QuickBooks to streamline accounting, payroll and payments solutions. The third and smallest branch makes tax software for professional accountants.
With unemployment relatively low, the historic correlation between people having jobs and people filing their taxes means more business for tax preparation companies like Intuit.
"But the stuff I've just mentioned could just as easily apply to H&R Block, the biggest bricks-and-mortar tax preparation firm in America," Cramer said.
And while H&R Block's stock is up year to date, Intuit has all but trumped its leading competitor by embracing the future, the internet, and the cloud, Cramer said.
"Unlike their top rival, Intuit focuses on online tax filings. They don't have any of the pesky, expensive brick-and-mortar locations — consider it the Amazon of tax returns — and they're the No. 1 player in the tax software space, with a massive market share of around 65 percent," Cramer said.
Intuit has also ushered customers of QuickBooks, which is in the process of moving to the cloud, into a service subscription model, a Wall Street favorite because of the recurring revenues it produces.
"Not only does this give Intuit a more predictable revenue stream, it also gives them many more opportunities to cross-sell their customers on other products," the "Mad Money" host said.
But the most mystifying thing about Intuit's business is how the stock has rallied despite President Donald Trump's plans for tax reform, which include a one-page outline and promises to cut the number of tax brackets, eliminate various deductions and repeal the alternative minimum tax.
"I don't care whether you see this plan as the triumph of free market economics or a ridiculous giveaway to rich people that could explode the deficit," Cramer said. "What matters here is that Trump's bare-bones tax plan would absolutely make it simpler and easier to file your taxes … and a simpler tax code would be very bad news for Intuit, because more people could just do the paperwork themselves without any help from their software."
Intuit's stock did take a hit on the day the plan was announced, but it has since bounced back, a trajectory that Cramer attributed to skepticism about whether Washington will be able to pass tax reform.
And with Congress up in arms about the federal budget, the debt ceiling, and a slew of other issues including Obamacare, Cramer does not expect much legislation to pass anytime soon.
"While many skeptics thought that Trump's tax plan would spell disaster for the tax preparation firms, the dysfunction in Washington has turned out to be a huge gift for Intuit," the "Mad Money" host said. "And besides, it's become very clear that this company is about so much more than tax prep, with its small business software business that is just embracing the cloud and growing like a weed. Even if we do somehow get some major tax reform, I bet Intuit's stock can go higher still, which is why I'd be a buyer of Intuit's stock, INTU, on any weakness."
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