Cramer Remix: This group of stocks could signal inflation

  • CNBC's Jim Cramer explains why the big pharmaceutical companies could signal what’s next for the market.
  • The "Mad Money" host also sits down with the CEO of Constellation Brands and Chipotle Mexican Grill's CEO and CFO.

In a broad-based sell-off of this magnitude, investors have to be prepared to wait and see how low stocks can actually go, CNBC's Jim Cramer said on Thursday.

"At moments like this, you need some touchstones to figure out when the pain is likely to end," the "Mad Money" host said. "This is not the time to be a hero."

And with the major averages down sharply just one day after the Dow Jones Industrial Average hit a record high, Cramer warned investors not to be too aggressive just yet.

"When it comes to this decline, I think it's too early to be really aggressive," he said. "I am worried about your fellow shareholders. They're your worst enemies right here. Many of them are people with big profits, renters who were just along for the ride. They don't want to give up their gains."

So, when will you know that it's time to act? For that, Cramer laid out the 10 "telltale signs" that could drive the market to its true bottom.

One of the key signs centered on the pharmaceutical sector. Shares of the drugmakers — Allergan, Pfizer, Merck and Eli Lilly included — have been rallying for days, and until they fall back to sustainable levels, the market could endure further declines, Cramer said.

"They're too high. Why? Because these big pharma names are bellwether inflation stocks," he said. "They all pay bountiful dividends, and these dividends get less attractive when bond yields are rising, so they tend to get clobbered in this kind of environment and they haven't been yet. I'll feel a lot more comfortable when Merck goes back below $68 and Pfizer sinks below $40."

To read the rest of Cramer's sell-off analysis, click here.

Constellation Brands CEO: Canopy investment was 'offense, not defense'

Robert Sands, CEO, Constellation Brands
Scott Mlyn | CNBC
Robert Sands, CEO, Constellation Brands

Constellation Brands' massive stake in cannabis producer Canopy Growth has nothing to do with the welfare of Constellation's core business, CEO Rob Sands told CNBC on Thursday.

"This has nothing to do with the core business or defending against the potential cannibalization of beverage alcohol by cannabis. There's really no evidence of that," he told Cramer in an exclusive interview. "And our core business, as we've demonstrated in the first half of the year and this quarter, is stronger than ever."

Instead, the move was a preemptive bet that the popularity of marijuana-based products would rise faster than expected, Sands said, adding that "the future is now" when it comes to cannabis.

"We're playing offense, not defense," the CEO said. "Really, what we're trying to do is take advantage of our strong position, our growth, and invest in an aligned category, which we think ... is truly a new frontier of a category that will be at least a couple of hundred billion dollars globally over the next 10 or 15 years."

To watch and read more about his interview, click here.

Sands also spoke to how the political landscape is changing when it comes to pot. Click here for more.

Chipotle CEO and CFO on strategy post-food scares

Jack Hartung, CFO and Brian Niccol, CEO of Chipotle Mexican Grill. 
Adam Jeffery | CNBC
Jack Hartung, CFO and Brian Niccol, CEO of Chipotle Mexican Grill. 

Chipotle Mexican Grill's past food safety scandals set the company back in terms of its marketing goals, but since Brian Niccol came on as CEO, it's gotten back on track, Chipotle's chief financial officer told CNBC.

"We've always been a company that's about food — real food, real ingredients, real cooking — and people, making sure that we hire great people, invest in them so that they can run great restaurants," CFO Jack Hartung told Cramer in a joint interview with Niccol.

"We got knocked on our heels a little bit, so we stopped talking about the things that made Chipotle special," Hartung admitted. "The great thing now, ... since Brian joined and we brought a new team together, is we're back on our front foot. We're talking about our food."

Niccol echoed Hartung's remarks, saying that what he was most impressed with when he joined the fast-casual chain was Chipotle's "commitment to food safety."

To watch and read more about their interview, click here.

Long-term investors, listen up

Clorox products are displayed for sale in a supermarket in New York.
Scott Eells | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Clorox products are displayed for sale in a supermarket in New York.

Finally, in the wake of Thursday's sell-off, Cramer decided to examine safety stocks like Clorox, bond-market alternatives that tend to do well in periods of market decline.

While shares of Clorox dipped on Thursday because of the rise in bond yields to levels competitive with its dividend, the "Mad Money" host argued that if you have the time and money to be patient, the gains could be huge.

"If you have a long-term time horizon, if you can afford to be patient, then you may want to think about buying the consumer packaged goods stocks oh-so-gradually into this horrendous weakness," he said.

Cramer pointed out that since 1989, when he sold what now could be considered prime real estate in Brooklyn, shares of Clorox have gained a wild 2,000-percent return, much larger than what risk-averse investors could get from bonds.

"No rush, but remember: the appreciation stream, not the dividend stream, that's the real pot of gold at the end of a very tortured rainbow," Cramer said.

Lightning round: Stick with your specs

Nektar Therapeutics: "I think it's a great spec. It's got a big pipeline of drugs. You know, look, the speculative stocks aren't working that well right now, but I don't want to sell the stock here. I think that would be a big mistake."

Alteryx, Inc.: "It's up more than 100 percent. It's almost like I should institute some rules. If it's up more than 100 percent, we kind of let it cool. I'd say this one is one of those that I talked about at the top of the show — 7 to 10 percent pullback, totally realistic. Let it happen and then do a little picking."

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