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'I can't succumb to the negativity' — Cramer urges investors to find positives in crushed stocks

Key Points
  • "I'm not throwing in the towel, besides the fact that I'm surrounded by towel throwers," CNBC's Jim Cramer says.
  • Cramer argues, "We're starting to get some good numbers" after what he called the "Powell bear market" in the final three months of 2018.
  • The market, in midmorning trading, was under pressure for the fourth session in row on Thursday, but still up strongly so far in 2019.
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Cramer urges investors to find the positives in crushed stocks

CNBC's Jim Cramer urged investors on Thursday to find the positives in "crushed" stocks, arguing U.S. equities can only go higher after the Christmas Eve washout on Wall Street.

"I can't succumb to the negativity," Cramer said on "Squawk Box, " referring to this week's pullback in the market after the year's rip-roaring start. "I'm not throwing in the towel, besides the fact that I'm surrounded by towel throwers."

However, Cramer, host of "Mad Money, " said he would wait for a select few stocks to finish falling before buying them.

Cramer has said previously that investors have failed to realize that the "Powell bear market" ended after Dec. 24, which saw the sink 2.7 percent to the lowest close of 2018.

Since that day, the S&P 500 rallied nearly 18 percent as of Wednesday's close, with the bulk of that advance coming in 2019. The market, however, was under pressure for the fourth session in row on Thursday.

The Dow Jones industrial average and S&P 500 on Wednesday had their lowest closes since Feb. 14. The Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq were all down three straight sessions and on track to post their worst week of 2019.

"Find the positives in the stocks that have been crushed," Cramer said. "I'm positive coming out of the ... Powell bear market. We're starting to get some good numbers."

Cramer's characterization of the Powell bear market refers to Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's October comments, which were later walked back, that sparked interest rate concerns that slammed stocks in the fourth quarter.

One of the big losers Thursday on Wall Street was Kroger's stock, which was plunging after the supermarket chain reported quarterly earnings and revenue that fell short of expectations.

Cramer said he had a hard time finding the positive in Kroger's earnings report but added he wouldn't tell investors to sell or buy. "They've got their work cut out for them," he concluded.