Investing

Cramer asks 'how can you not start buying here'

Key Points
  • Investors should be willing to put cash to work after the market's worst day since "Black Monday" in 1987, CNBC's Jim Cramer said Friday. 
  • "There's trillions of dollars on the sideline, waiting and waiting and waiting," Cramer said on "Squawk Box."
  • "They've got what they've been waiting for," he said. "How can you not start buying here unless you just are so fearful?"
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There's trillions of dollars on the sideline, how can you not start buying: Jim Cramer

Investors should be willing to put cash to work after the market's worst day since "Black Monday" in 1987, CNBC's Jim Cramer said Friday. 

"There's trillions of dollars on the sideline, waiting and waiting and waiting," Cramer said on "Squawk Box." "They've got what they've been waiting for." He asked, "How can you not start buying here unless you just are so fearful?" 

Cramer's comments Friday come as U.S. stock futures were pointing to a decidedly higher open. 

S&P futures hit their 5% limit up, putting a lid on gains that's meant to ensure orderly trading when the market opens. 

The market did open higher, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average rising around 1,000 points, or 4.7%, before giving back some of those gains. 

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq on Thursday joined the Dow in bear market territory, down more than 20% from their all-time highs last month.

Cramer said Thursday's pullback, driven by widespread fears of a global recession because of the coronavirus, creates opportunities to buy into companies that are still positioned for long-term growth. 

He said that means companies with both strong balance sheets and operating in sectors with continued relevance to consumers, such as Verizon and Bristol-Myers Squibb. 

Cramer pointed to Disney as another example. Cramer said he had been waiting for news that Disney would close its U.S. theme parks,  which the company announced Thursday.

"I think Disney is a buy today," he said. "There's always people who don't know about these things and they say, 'Holy cow, they closed the parks.' And they sell the stocks even though it might be a terrific buying opportunity." 

Cramer has been both critical of the U.S. government's response to the coronavirus, urging for more measures to help workers and businesses who are impacted, while also encouraging investors to not stay entirely away from the market.

Shares of Disney were up more than 4% in early trading, following a nearly 13% decline on Thursday.

The stock closed down Thursday at $91.81, putting it around 40% off its 52-week high of $153, which it hit in November shortly after the launch of its Disney+ streaming video service.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin also argued Friday for long-term investors to take advantage of the market's decline. 

"I look back at people who bought stocks after the crash in 1987, people who bought stocks after the financial crisis. For long-term investors, this will be a great investment opportunity," Mnuchin said on CNBC's "Squawk on the Street." 

Disclosure: Cramer's charitable trust owns shares of Disney and Bristol-Myers.

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