Mad Money

Cramer Remix: The battle between these stocks proves why tech triumphs

Key Points
  • CNBC's Jim Cramer breaks down the distinguishing factor between Intuit and H&R Block.
  • The "Mad Money" host also sits down with the CEOs of Williams-Sonoma and Aimmune Therapeutics.
  • In the lightning round, Cramer can't condone selling a big-name pharmaceutical play.
Cramer Remix: The battle between these stocks proves why tech triumphs

Digitization affects countless industries from retail to health care, but on Wednesday, CNBC's Jim Cramer flagged another under-the-radar group being affected: tax preparation companies.

Specifically, the "Mad Money" host stacked software-savvy TurboTax parent Intuit against legacy brick-and-mortar giant H&R Block to get some perspective on the digital wave.

His impression? That with digitization and a dash of diversification, Intuit will be a clear winner as the world increasingly goes online.

"Long story short: Intuit keeps crushing H&R Block because they're not really comparable anymore," he said. "H&R Block remains a bricks-and-mortar tax prep chain. Intuit's become a diversified software company that's really more of a play on the digitization of finance, especially for small- and medium-size business."

With tax preparation as well as non-tax-season offerings like accounting platform QuickBooks, Intuit is leveraging technology to get a leg up on the struggling H&R Block, Cramer said.

"We live in a world where technology almost always triumphs," he told investors. "That's why Intuit's been crushing H&R Block, and it's why I still like Intuit's stock even after its incredible multi-year move. H&R Block? Hard pass."

Disney-Comcast-Fox: No losers?

An entrance to the Fox Studios is shown in Los Angeles.
Mike Blake | Reuters

It's no secret that Wall Street is hungry for growth, which is why Cramer wasn't all that surprised when the Walt Disney Company upped its bid for a key portion of Twenty-First Century Fox on Wednesday.

Fox reportedly called Disney's latest cash-and-stock bid of $71.3 billion, or $38 a share, "superior" to NBCUniversal parent Comcast's latest bid, an all-cash offer valued at $65 billion, or $35 a share.

Cramer said that in this "multi-billion-dollar poker game," Comcast can still up the ante.

"It's got superb cash flow and most followers of the situation now believe the cable kingpin will come up with at least one more ... higher bid, forcing Disney to raise their offer yet again," he said Wednesday.

And after shares of Disney and Comcast closed up 0.99 and 1.77 percent respectively on Wednesday, Cramer argued that investors saw winning situations on both sides.

GE: More pain, little gain?

Employees stand as a subsea oil and gas tree is maneuvered by a crane at the General Electric Co. (GE) manufacturing plant in Montrose, U.K.
Simon Dawson | Bloomberg | Getty Images

All Cramer heard after news broke that Walgreens would replace General Electric in the Dow Jones industrial average was that "this has to be the bottom" for shares of GE.

But after hearing people call "bottom" in the ailing industrial's stock over and over again, the "Mad Money" host wasn't so sure.

Since GE Chairman and CEO John Flannery replaced former CEO Jeff Immelt in August 2017, market-watchers have thought the stock was bottoming nearly every step of the way, Cramer said.

They said it when the company cut its forecast that October; when GE halved its dividend in November; and again when it incurred a steep charge in its long-term care division in January.

"So now we're supposed to believe that being kicked out of the Dow Jones average after 111 years of being a member in good standing is somehow the bottom? On the basis of what, irony?" Cramer asked Wednesday.

To find out why Cramer doesn't see GE's stock bottoming anytime soon, click here.

Williams-Sonoma CEO on advantages of having physical stores

Laura Alber
John Chiala | CNBC

As Williams-Sonoma's business shifted from selling via catalogs to selling online, the furniture and kitchenware retailer remained consistently adamant about one thing: its stores.

"Even Amazon believes that they should have some real spaces," Laura Alber, the company's president and CEO, told CNBC on Wednesday. "When you go in a store and it's wonderful, it helps you make the purchase."

Scores of retailers are parsing how to enter the age of e-commerce, with many shuttering stores and building out their digital capabilities and others adopting pop-up shop formats to skirt the high real estate costs often associated with brick-and-mortar retail.

Many industry experts saw Amazon's acquisition of Whole Foods as a way for the e-commerce giant to preserve an on-the-ground retail presence, among other advantages.

But for Williams-Sonoma, which Alber said benefited from its time as a catalog-focused seller, a multichannel solution seems to be its secret sauce.

To watch and read more about Alber's interview, click here.

Former Aimmune Therapeutics CEO on partnering with Nestle

One day after he officially stepped down from his CEO post, Aimmune Therapeutics' Stephen Dilly is not letting up on his company's goal: helping people overcome potentially life-threatening allergies.

Dilly, also the drugmaker's founding executive chairman, sat down with Cramer for a Wednesday interview in which he addressed the persistent problems associated with food allergies.

He said some 20 million people in the United States suffer from food allergies, with three million of them specifically ailing from allergies to peanuts. According to Dilly, those numbers are on the rise. That's why his company has partnered with Nestle Health Sciences.

"Peanut allergy is very interesting, but another allergy you might not have thought about is egg allergy," the former CEO said, adding that children with egg and milk allergies can be "effectively malnourished.

"They're not getting a proper diet, they don't thrive, they don't grow as well as they should," he said. "And so with Nestle, what we're doing is looking at all the sort of gamut of different food allergies that we could treat and thinking about the ones where, like peanut allergy, it's about prevent and avoid. But there are the ones like milk and egg where the objective is to reintroduce into the diet."

To watch Dilly's full interview, click here.

Lightning round: Still behind BMY... for now

In Cramer's lightning round, he zoomed through his take on callers' favorite stocks:

Bristol-Myers Squibb Company: "Bristol-Myers at a 3 percent yield with a decent pipeline? I'm not going to tell you to get rid of it. Frankly, they've got to do something because I can tell you that Opdivo's just not doing as well as Keytruda, which is Merck's anti-cancer drug. But you know what, I can't tell people to sell Bristol-Myers down here. That would be shortsighted."

Under Armour, Inc.: "Look, we got behind that stock at $14, $15 at the advice of, actually, my wife Lisa, who demanded that [CEO] Kevin Plank come on the show and explain why his stock isn't going up. He came on. It's been a winner and it's going to stay that way because he is."

Disclosure: Comcast is the owner of NBCUniversal, parent company of CNBC and Also, Cramer's charitable trust owns shares of Comcast and Amazon.

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