- "You shouldn't be too eager to buy sizably here because we have to be prepared for some more ugly headlines," CNBC's Jim Cramer said.
- "Still, we need to keep our eyes on the prize, and that prize is what works once the smoke clears," the "Mad Money" host said.
- Investors should focus on companies that can "thrive even during the pandemic" because the "trend and the pandemic may just be getting started," he said.
No one knows for certain when the coronavirus pandemic will settle, the stock market will bottom and economic activity will return to its axis.
Yet, investors ought to accept that even as uncertainty abounds, opportunities will rear their heads, CNBC's Jim Cramer said Thursday.
"You shouldn't be too eager to buy sizably here because we have to be prepared for some more ugly headlines," the "Mad Money" host said, such as higher infection counts and death rates alongside "giant bankruptcies" and failed pharmaceutical tests. "Still, we need to keep our eyes on the prize, and that prize is what works once the smoke clears."
He revealed the trends he will continue to follow once world health officials get a grip on the spread of the coronavirus and global commerce begins to return to normalcy. With social distancing in full effect, the former hedge-fund manager's recommendations lean heavily on technology stories.
"Eventually, there will be lots of other winners," he said, "but, for now, you should focus on these companies that can thrive even during the pandemic, because, sadly, both this trend and the pandemic may just be getting started."
The so-called stay-at-home economy will continue its ascent and it will only compound as more people experiment with working from home, Cramer said.
Cisco Systems' Webex and Zoom Video Communications, two video conferencing providers, are among the biggest winners of this trend. Cybersecurity companies such as Okta and Zscaler will also benefit. Furthermore, the trend has a spillover effect on the sustainability front, the host noted.
"Think about how much time we normally lose every day commuting to work. Think about all the carbon emissions that spew into the atmosphere," Cramer said. "Turns out that's unnecessary for millions of people. That's a huge lesson, and it won't be unlearned, which is why Cisco and Zoom just won't quit."
Additionally, as people both young and old limit their time outside the house, at-home entertainment usage will balloon. Activision Blizzard and Take-Two Interactive are winners in the video game space, Netflix still reigns in video streaming, and Domino's Pizza is "king of delivery," Cramer said.
The stay-at-home economy plays a role in almost every trend on Cramer's watch list.
As enterprises adopt 5G, or the fifth generation of wireless technology, they will make working from home an even better experience with faster connection speeds, Cramer said.
Businesses over the years have grown more dependent on technology to connect with consumers. DocuSign allows users to easily scan and email important and official documents, such as for a signature to close on a house. Cramer called it a winner.
Teladoc Health is another winner in his playbook. While the company, which connects patients with doctors for appointments virtually, is not profitable, the Trump administration earlier this week authorized expansion of telemedicine services, Cramer highlighted.
"Anything that lets you see a doctor without actually going to the doctor's office is a winner during this pandemic," he said. "It's cheaper, it's more convenient, and it's a heck of a lot safer."
Disclosure: Cramer's charitable trust owns shares of Amazon and Costco.