Cramer: Don’t Fear These CEO Departures

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Changes in the corner office usually give Cramer cause for concern. Usually but not always.

"I often tell you that whenever there's a sudden change in management at a company whose stock you own, you should sell," said Cramer. But there are exceptions to this rule.

"Let me make something clear," said Cramer. "CEOs retire all the time, and that's not always a bad thing, it's not always something to worry about."

Cramer said his caution is piqued when a CEO departs suddenly. "That's when you need to get scared and sell the darned stock. However, there's a world of difference between a sudden management change and a planned succession," he added.

And although changes in the corner office have either recently occurred or are about to occur in the following companies - Cramer thinks the successions are so well planned that running for the exits in these cases would be a mistake.


"In March of 2012 we learned that Jim Skinner, the brilliant long-time McDonald's CEO, would be stepping down June 30th of the same year, to be replaced by Don Thompson, formerly the President and Chief Operating Officer," said Cramer.

"I wish Skinner could have stayed forever, but Thompson was Skinner's protege and heir apparent. Thompson is seasoned, ready and rocking. Ultimately, I think McDonald's stock goes higher," Cramer said.

Business exec leaving
Martin Barraud | OJO Images | Getty Images


"Back in September of 2011, Costco founder and longtime CEO Jim Sinegal announced he would step down at the end of that year. Sinegal had an amazing track record, but there was a clear plan of succession, he was replaced by Craig Jelinek, the former chief operating officer," Cramer explained.

"Since Jelinek took over at the very end of 2011, Costco has given you a 35% return with dividends, including the big special dividend they announced late last year, outperforming the S&P 500. Costco's latest quarter was excellent, and I think the stock has more room to run," Cramer said.

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ARM Holdings

"ARM Holdings, a semiconductor company just announced a CEO succession plan earlier this week, as the current chief executive plans to step down at the beginning of July," Cramer explained.

"ARM already has a successor ready to go, the company's current President, and he's been groomed for the job. That's how you do it. That's what a CEO retirement is supposed to look like."

Call Cramer: 1-800-743-CNBC

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