Wall Street is not yet out of the woods, but CNBC's Jim Cramer on Thursday said investors caught a glimpse of what's to come.
"In the last 24 hours we got something that we haven't felt in a long time. It's called hope," the "Mad Money" host said.
The comments were made after the Dow Jones recorded its best three-day streak since 1931 as Congress made progress on an economic response to the coronavirus pandemic.
"And while there's still no joy, at least we know that a victory is possible, as the stock market showed us with the third day of this astounding rally from the depths of the abyss," Cramer said.
The Dow surged more than 1,351 points, or 6.4%, to 22,552.17. The blue-chip index has soared nearly 4,000, or about 21%, from Monday's close for its first three-day rally in nearly two months. The 30-stock average remains in bear territory, roughly 24% under its Feb. 12 close.
Despite a Labor Department report in the morning that revealed a record 3.28 million unemployment claims last week, the rally was powered by a unanimous vote in the Senate in favor of a historic $2 trillion bill to boost the economy. The plan includes stimulus checks for Americans and relief for struggling businesses in the midst of the virus outbreak.
The proposal now goes on to the House, where Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said it will have "strong bipartisan support" in a vote expected to come Friday.
Boeing has seen four straight days of double-digit advances, tech stocks ran, and even the "hated financials" rallied, Cramer noted.
"This thing isn't perfect, but, man, has Congress learned from the errors of 2008," he said of the massive stimulus package. "This time, our leaders went big, as big as I've ever seen, and they're not just saving business this time — they're lending a hand to everybody, especially workers who've been laid off through no fault of their own."
The host also credited Fed Chairman Jerome Powell's message earlier Thursday for injecting confidence in the market. On NBC's "Today," Powell said the central bank would do whatever it could to blunt the economic slowdown caused by the pandemic and that "we're not going to run out of ammunition" when it comes to lending.
Cramer cautioned against getting too bullish, however, saying it's "always possible we'll retest Monday's lows" and advised against short-selling. He compared the fight against COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, and the economic blowback to fighting a war.
The U.S., with more than 82,000 confirmed cases as of Thursday at 6 p.m., has eclipsed both Italy and China in the number of cases, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. The U.S. has recorded more than 1,100 related deaths and about 620 recoveries, the data said.
Cramer thinks drugmaker Regeneron, which is working on a treatment, could have a promising remedy for the deadly disease.
"I know there's going to be bad news, on both the health front and the economy front, but at least we're finally fighting back, and I think people underestimate the possibility that something good can happen," he said.