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tv   Mad Money  CNBC  December 20, 2012 11:00pm-12:00am EST

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in fact, in a recent survey, 95% of people who tried it agreed that it relieved their headache fast. visit today for a special trial offer. visit customer erin swenson bought so, i'm happy. today. sales go up... i'm happy. it went out today... i'm happy. what if she's not home? (together) she won't be happy. use ups! she can get a text alert, reroute... even reschedule her package. it's ups my choice. are you happy? i'm happy. i'm happy. i'm happy. i'm happy. i'm happy. happy. happy. happy. happy. (together) happy. i love logistics. i'm jim cramer, and welcome to my world. you need to get in the game! firms are going to go out of business and he's nuts! they're nuts! they know nothing! i always like to say there's a bull market somewhere. "mad money." you can't afford to miss it. hey, i'm cramer. welcome to "mad money."
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welcome to cramerica. other people want to make friends. i'm just trying to save you a little money. my job is not just to entertain you but to educate and teach. so call me at 1-800-743-cnbc. we may all be focused on the fiscal cliff. we may see the talks blowing up right in front of our eyes. even as the averages denied washington's gravitational pull, the dow gaining 60 points, s&p climbing .55%, nasdaq advancing .20%, we know when the president or the speaker of the house comes on the tube these days, the market is going to get hammered. sell, sell, sell, sell, sell, sell. even if it is just temporary. >> sell, sell, sell. >> the only thing you need to know is the time they're going to come on. if you could just blast out of some aggressive growth stocks or sell some s&p futures when see them walk to the podium, you could probably coin money! i'm surprised the president doesn't start his talks by
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saying, look, look, america, i'm about to send the s&p 500 down a percent with what i say. how about the speaker? maybe he should say you better dump your apple now. suffice it to say we all have to keep one eye on washington and hope they don't poke it out with their endless failure to rise above partisanship. when we started this campaign, i'm sure a lot of people said don't worry, they'll do it. today was like the worst day yet. the two parties hate each other. they really do. they personally hate each other. but how about the other eye, the one that's not focused on the fact that all of our paychecks are about to be reduced and we're likely going to have big layoffs? what is that eye supposed to be focused on? and is it even possible to focus on anything but the chaos that will ensue. i'm calling for the super bowl
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resolution. the people rise up by february and we get a compromise. we got the answer to what we should be focused on in spades today. we needed to focus on the desire of corporate america to stop the paralysis, and get busy growing their businesses, not just new sales and better products but through acquisitions. >> buy, buy, buy! >> this morning i only had to look no further than post nine where i'm stationed on the floor of the new york stock exchange for "squawk on the street" to see this new acquisition dynamic play out. today nyse euronext agreed to be acquired by intercontinental exchange, a young upstart with not even a dozen years of trading under its belt. this went from $24.32 and change, had a fantastic
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appreciation, which shows you how an iconic american business can be worth much more than it's trading floor, providing a competitor gets to acquire it. separate these companies, know what they are? they're part of a dog eat dog universe of exchanges and an industry with way too much capacity. together they become the global powerhouse that can dominate futures trading. in other words, this is a dodd-frank legislation made me do it deal. it shows both companies are willing to do what's right for you, the shareholders, even if our leaders aren't willing to do what's right for you, the taxpayers. sadly the new york stock exchange is something that we used to come into a newer company because the equity business, which is its bread and butter, has shrunk and changed dramatically. it's kind of more like in english. it's for the worse that it shrunk.
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this deal ensures the exchange will stay alive. i suspect stocks will become a very small part of the enough business, though. i like stocks. all right. it's a big brand new deal, though. don't let it overshadow what else is happening today. for example, oracle. eloqua is a cloud computing play. what's amazing, how about it was more than double when it came public months ago. oracle, the other day reported terrific quarter and correlated success with its cloud acquisitions and, boom, here's another. your certificate of deposit, did that double since the summer? i don't think so. or how about the recent surge in gardner denver? stop yawning. money should not be yawned about. the stock had been an underperformer of late because of european exposure, as well as the decline in natural gas drilling. and an activist investor got involved. we learn from news reports it's
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on the verge of selling itself to spx. spx is doing what a company has to do to grow in this business right now, make an acquisition. particularly in the oil patch. it's a match made in heaven and it isn't being impeded by washington. if you bought it this summer instead of selling it, 25 points. not bad, right? or how about the reward yesterday with merkel buying alterra? it sounded like german chancellor angela merkel. it's a consolidation allowing merkel to grow and make more money for shareholders. no one laughed when david did that chancellor merkel thing and
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no one laughed again. thank you. these deals have several things in common. first the acquiring companies aren't waiting for washington to rise above anymore. they're moving their stock and cash and putting it to work. the u.s. economy is simply much stronger than we thought just a few quarters ago. second, these deals show that there are ceos who are willing to give up or share their empires in order to make money for their shareholders. oh, cramer, these people are so rich. i know they're not sacrificing financially. that's not the point. the target ceos will all do well but these guys are empire builders. finally, even as the sale of the finally, even as the sale of the new york stock exchange indicates in a symbolic way that interest in equities are waning, these deals show the companies are listed -- that are listed themselves are often worth far more than they're currently
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trading for. that's not an aberration. it happening marketwide. think about it. we have a financial brokerage company, right, stocks and oil service company, a tech concern and an insurance business bringing out value virtually overnight. here's the bottom line. we can be riveted and saddened by what's going on in washington or angry, the refusal of all politicians to rise above their milieu and come to an agreement, or we can be constructive and search for the opportunities that are right there in front of us, in my case literally in front of me, like the acquisition of the nyse/ice. one is a drama playing out slow motion, and the other has turned washington into a side show. washington -- >> all aboard! >> wall street. which is exactly as it should be. let's go to mickey in michigan. mickey! >> caller: booyah from michigan, jim. >> i'm liking michigan. i'm liking brady from michigan. can you believe he was a walk on?
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>> caller: today discover said their card use is up, they're hiring folks from more business. is it time to get more of discover? and second one, do you think ebay can squash them and buy them out? >> no, i don't think they'll do that. i do like ebay very much. i actually like discover. but it's mastercard, then ebay, then discover. i was a little surprised it was a little weak but the stock has had a major run. john in california. >> caller: booyah, jim, from the sacramento valley of northern california. >> what's going on? >> caller: anyway, i got -- i noticed some activity in the house building around here back around northern california, sacramento valley. my play is berkshire b. what do you think of that? >> i think it actually made sense.
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i campaigned for that to be a housing and insurance company stock. i think you're dead on, i think it's a great buy. i think you're getting them pretty cheap if i do say so myself. keep one eye on the paralysis in washington and one on the companies no longer waiting to be act. there's money to be made just being a shareholder. get out of those bond funds. they're going to crush you. find some good stocks. coming up, trend spotting? tonight cramer's got the exclusive interviews you need to catch the market's next hot trend. first, wall street's been taking a bite out of apple but tech manufacturer jbil lit up the ticker today. is it charged for a run in 2013? then, as hiring picks up in the u.s., could paychecks help you cash in? and with the housing market in full recovery, is it time to furnish your financials with ethan allen? they are the interviews you
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can't afford to miss, all coming up on "mad money." don't miss a minute of "mad money." follow @jimcramer on twitter. tweet cramer #madtweets. send jim an e-mail or give us a call at 1-800-743-cnbc. miss something? head to
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our leaders in washington are constantly paying lip service to the importance of small business as they posture and generally do nothing constructive to reach a fiscal cliff deal. if the politicians really cared about small business, they would just stop talking right now and start listening to paychex, the leading payroll processing company that reported last night. they delivered inline earnings slightly weaker than expected revenues. it lowered its growth forecast down to the 2% to 3% range.
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paychex is paying you to wait for a term but i think washington is making you wait longer. so let's check in with the president and ceo of paychex, find out more about how his company is doing and get a read on the hiring situation in this country. welcome back to "mad money." >> thanks for having me, jim. >> i got to tell you, sir, when i look at the different companies that are most impacted by washington policies, i see a company that can't make a lot of money on the float because the federal reserve has to keep rates so low, they have to ignite the economy. you have a washington claiming they want to help small business but they're doing everything to destroy confidence that is required to start a small business. is washington the most difficult thing you face at paychex? >> well, i certainly think it doesn't help. when you look at the nfib index and consumer confidence, both have fallen after they were starting to look up in the fall.
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i think it's really the fiscal cliff. all the attention on the fiscal cliff and no action is really producing i think a dampered view from small business and they're kind of waiting on the sidelines right now. >> but on the other side, if you're a company and we go over the fiscal cliff, how the heck do you figure out the paycheck and what has to be taken out unless you call paychex? >> depending on the number of regulations, there's probably going to be more regulation and that does help us. but we'd like to see new business formation get back to where it used to be a few years ago and i think you have to get past these things. what you're seeing in our clients, they're not opening up their second location, not hiring more employees. it's fairly quiet. it's fairly quiet. our checks per payroll and our client base is still positive but it's starting to moderate. 1.8 to 1.2 is a key metric. >> the journal felt that it
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wouldn't happen and it didn't but now it does seem to be happening. >> the 1.2 was impacted by hurricane sandy. we had about 20% of our clients impacted by the hurricane. i think we'll see that come back closer to the 1.8%, 1.7% in the third, we hope. >> let go back to that small business formation. you've got some numbers mr. rivera provided. we used to be at 850,000 business starts. we're down to 758,000. we're like a much bigger country than we used to be. that's how few people are starting businesses? >> it really is. it's coming back but it's been very slow. all of these regulations and concerns first about the election, which we're now past but with the fiscal cliff, i think the additional startup, one, it's tough to get the money, you don't want to take the risk. consumer confidence and consumer spending is not quite there yet. at least it's not increasing so you're really not taking the
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risk to start your business. >> you would figure someone could get a loan to start a business. why take a loan if you're so scared that maybe you go under? >> right. i think when you think of small business, most of of the loans they've gotten are used to be with home equity, which you don't have these days and/or loans from -- and you're a little bit higher risk loans so it tougher to get that loan from banks or borrow it from things like home equity that you used to be able able to do. you do see housing starts coming back a little bit so we hope that businesses around housing and the selling of homes and so forth will start to pick up. we do see that as positive. >> you know i'm a good paychex customer. one of the reasons i count on you is because we're putting through a health care act in 2014 and i don't want to screw up because the companies that screw up get really crushed by the government. i understand that you got quite a business of just advising people how to get -- how to handle that law. >> well we do.
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our health insurance business is now the 28th largest insurance agency in the country and it's because we play the expert. we have all the payroll data and we can help you. in the face of health care reform and how confusing that is for businesses, we're able to help you with all of the data to know whether you're going to get a tax credit from handling the insurance premiums for your employees or whether to go to an exchange or whether to buy on your own. i think there's going to be a lot of movement here in the next year or two and i think we'll be here at paychecks to help them. >> given that business, which is obviously going to be a growth business, as any business that has too do with regulation in washington, and your hr business, which is very fast growing, at what point can they really -- not just offset but move the needle? i know they're not large enough to impact your core business but they're growing fast and they seem like a secular growth story. >> they'll still small in the
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overall $2.2 billion in revenue that we have. however, it's growing quickly. the nonpayroll business is over $500 million now. it's a growing business. and just selling health insurance has grown a little over 20% the last year. we're pretty happy with that business and we think it will continue to do well. >> the last thing i'm going to ask you, what is your message to washington right now about what needs to be done? >> well, i think it's got to get done. whatever it is, you know, i think what businesses are waiting for is to see with certainty what they're going to face next year. and i think the sooner it gets done, the sooner that entrepreneurs and small business owners are going to either start or expand their businesses and we just need some certainty, something out there that they know what they're going to face with healthcare reform and with all the tax situations. once they have certainty, i think you'll start to see things pick up again. >> in the meantime we'll take
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the yield and we'll know that within day business will have to start forming again because we're too great a country not to. thank you so much for coming on "mad money." >> thanks for having me, jim. happy holiday. >> good business, good growth that can only get greater if we don't go over the fiscal cliff. i would stay with it. stay with cramer. >> coming up, recharge? wall street has been taking a bite out of apple but jbil circuit got a charge today after reporting an upside surprise. is it ready to assemble a rally in the new year? cramer speaks to the ceo just ahead. [ male announcer ] this december, remember --
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for weeks everybody's talked about the looming fiscal cliff like it's all important, like nothing else matters. but you know what's really important, too? corporate earnings. and we've been getting some pretty swell corporate earnings for this week. take jabil circuit. when other companies outsource their manufacturing operations, they go to jabil. they assemble set top boxes and iphones, medical devices, you name it. this is a company that has its
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fingers in a lot of different cookie jars. they reported last night and the numbers are fabulous. they had a 5 percent earnings increase. the stock rose 7.4%, made jabil one of the biggest gainers. that's why i'm glad to have a chance to speak with tim main. it was the most bullish in this conference call that i've heard you in i'd say eight or nine quarters. >> i think it was a great quarter. what's gratifying is we put up our highest revenue number, in what is a lackluster demand environment. we feel good about the direction
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of the company and the business and there are some great guys coming behind me to take over. >> you're here talking about the second half being very good from a revenue and margin standpoint, talking about tailwinds. let me just play the skeptic here. where is that coming from because i see china coming back a little, maybe europe's done going down, we seem to be a little bit stalled. somebody's building something around this world. >> i think it's a matter of jabil being very competitive in the markets that we serve and having sufficient diversification so that if one part of our business, for instance networking or telecommunications may be going through a lull or a slower period with government spending and business spending, capital spending down, we have some other parts of our business that are doing extremely well. you mentioned some of the mechanics business we're involved in which we call our
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materials technology group. that has nothing to do with electronics so we don't have to sell any electronic hardware for those businesses to perform well. parts of our business really are a reflection of the economy and other parts of our business are growing very robustly. so i'm very hopeful for the balance of the year and, you know, i think the company is diversified enough to take advantage of whatever opportunities are out there. >> okay. i am so glad about the diversification. in your conference call, you were actually precluded from talking about new wins. i don't want people to think we're dancing around certain big customers.
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after the last quarter you said results were negatively impacted by a challenging new program ramp. can i assume the program ramp is now behind you and the money you had to spend is now behind you and now you're reaping the benefits? >> i think that's partially true. i think over the course of the quarter, the ramp that i was referring to, we did much better than this past quarter. we have many, many things we need to improve in that area. so we're still at work there. the diversified manufacturing services margins were up 50 basis points, quarter on quarter, that's an indication that there's been sufficient healing there and revenue quarter over quarter in diversified manufacturing services was also up 20%. so the fever has broken a bit and, you know, behind every big program ramp, there's another new program ramp. we have more business that will ramp later in the year. some of the things that negatively impacted our q4 were largely behind us in the fiscal first quarter. >> okay. another program that i was
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confused about, forbes alexander addressed it, the cfo, said that there's strength in handsets but said there's weakness in set top box. i'm under the impression that -- i worked for a cable company in pure candor and business is pretty good. why would there be weakness in set top boxes? >> it may just be the class of boxes that we serve. in the high velocity segment, it was not a great quarter for us. the november quarter is typically a very seasonally strong quarter for us but in printing and some set top box areas, we did not have as robust a quarter as we typically do. offsetting that, there was very good handset sales and so that segment overall did relatively well.
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>> handset sales, research in motion reported, it looks a good quarter. are you taking share from others in handsets or is that market still growing at a level that we probably don't appreciate? >> well, the market is growing and i think that's something that people may not be taking into account, particularly the high end smartphone segment. mobility is in the early innings of what the people who run the business for us think is a 10 to 12-year cycle in the way that we interact with entertainment and content. so we look at the next four, five, six years as being a great opportunity for us. having said that, volumes were good in the past quarter and our market share -- one of our larger customers, a quarter or two ago indicated they would be consolidating their supply base
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to fewer suppliers and jabil is one of the beneficiaries of that consolidation. we were very happy to take that market share and turn that into a quarter which kind of laid a foundation underneath our revenue levels and now we're starting to see some growth again, even though unit volume sales are not increasing as much as you might think. that consolidation added volume to the business, as well as really prospectively looking out four, five years what we think is a very attractive market for us. >> i want to thank you for all your great years of coming on the show. i know this is the last time. i also want to think beth walters for mentioning you would be on "mad money" today. i look forward to speaking to your new ceo but you've done a fabulous job. jabil has delivered a gread return over the years.
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thanks so much tim main. >> thanks so much. have a great holiday. >> you, too. guys, he's bullish and people are looking for a tech stock that hasn't taken off. look at the long term. i think it's ready to accelerate again. stay with cramer. >> coming up, can you handle the heat? cramer gets you fired up for a searing hot lightning round. ♪ i don't wanna be right [ record scratch ] what?! it's not bad for you. it just tastes that way. [ female announcer ] honey nut cheerios cereal -- heart-healthy, whole grain oats. you can't go wrong loving it. to(all) the gulf!ion spot on earth. it doesn't matter which of our great states folks visit. mississippi, alabama, louisiana
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it is time. it's time for the lightning round. play to this sound and then the lightning round is over. are you ready skeedaddy? start with mark in texas. mark. >> caller: boo yeah from long view, texas, jim. >> now you are in the heart of our great country. how can i help? >> caller: well, energy 21, exxi. i know you've been kind of oil and gas right now, i don't think you're kind of hot on. i've been looking at this as a long-term investment thinking
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this one may be a really good one. i want your opinion. >> i'm with you. permian basin assets sold very high. too high. this is offshore but i'm saying older fields are coming back to life. these guys have older fields. buy, buy, buy. i agree with you. daniel in florida. >> caller: booyah from beautiful wesley chapel. >> everybody says beautiful where they're from. i would never say that. >> with regard to tronix, is that a good one to buy now? >> no, it's all about this lawsuit. i'd love the company to come on and argue with me but that is a company that is -- it's been involved in a lot of crazy stuff that has very little to do with the earnings. >> let's go to mark in arizona, please. >> caller: it's mark from arizona, formerly of washington crossing, pennsylvania.
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>> down the block from me. >> what's up? >> caller: thanks for taking my call. what is your take on lyb? >> i'm going to violate my rules here. this commodity company is so darn cheap, even after it's moved up dramatically, i'm going to stick with my recommendation, buy, buy, buy. rex in california? >> caller: qre, it's been down about 14%. >> every one of these, me and my colleagues are perplexed. the only one i'm going to stick my neck out is linn energy or lnco. go to @jimcramer on twitter. if you know why this group is
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getting hammered, go on and tell me. i have called everyone, have the most informed guys in the industry. they doesn't know. frank in pennsylvania. frank. >> caller: jim, want to know what your take is on jet? >> i like it. that group is doing quite well. i need to go to troy in california. troy. >> caller: yo, mad money. >> hey, hey. >> caller: this is troy from southern california. i was curious how you felt about semiconductors. >> you're getting an end of the year bounceback in that group. i prefer you to be in oracle. let's go to jeff in wisconsin. jeff. >> hey, how are you doing? a big booyah from mill milwaukee, wisconsin.
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txes? >> whenever i say it's a spec, you got to accept the consequences it can be up big or down big. that is the case with exas. that is the conclusion of the lightning round! >> coming up, well furnished? the housing hangover seems to be on the mend as u.s. home sales continue to pick up. but if you thought you missed the chance to play the rebound, think again. cramer is talking to the ceo of ethan allen to see if an investment here could help you investment here could help you get comfortable. ential for making or losing money
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right now we got a bull market in all things related to housing, especially housing related retailers. when i see a housing related retailer selling off, i smell opportunity. ethan allen interiors, a
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purveyor of highest quality home furnishings with free interior design services. ethan allen has been benefiting. the stock is giving you 72% since i initially got behind in in july of 2010. a lot of analysts didn't like it then. brecently the stock has been slammed, down 5 straight points from its high. i think they are giving a terrific entry point. it's latest quarter was sharply better than expected, especially the written orders. don't take it from me. let's hear from the chairman and ceo of ethan allen interiors to get a better sense of where it is headed. this company has made you a lot of money. welcome back to "mad money." >> first of all, i want to present you -- this is the 80-year young company. >> you reinvent yourself constantly.
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i know where your company is located. i know this is has been a traumatic time for you guys. you have a newtown, connecticut facility. >> we do. we have about 400 associates there and it really has been traumatic. last evening we had a memorial service, 3,500 local people came from newtown, from danbury. it is a tragedy. many of our associates live in newtown, we have a major facility there and it just shows the fragility of life, and i can speak as a parent that if you lose a child, nothing else matters. >> now, if someone wants to help, is there an organization that you would recommend that people help? >> they have set up a special section in the united way in danbury. and if you connect the united way danbury, they have an area where you can send funds and they're doing a lot of good work. >> okay. now your company itself has been pretty socially responsible. an issue that i thought was
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important is fuel, the footprint that your company has and how important this is to you. zero fuel now you use? >> it really is. it's a remarkable situation that we have, you know, we are a vertically integrated company. we have operations in vermont and vermont can go minus 40 in winter and this year we're going to burn zero oil. we have worked in terms of developing alternates, from wood waste we do heat and then we have a steam engine, like a steam engine in those old locomotive movies that you see, which creates electricity and also, jim, that we have probably one of the highest standards of environmental work that our associates do. we receive more awards from epa. most of the time epa gives you fines. we have established now two operations outside the united states. >> honduras and mexico. >> and mexico when we started it
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about four years back, small operation, less than a hundred people, 35,000 square feet. now it is 240,000 square feet and 700 associates. i suggested to my associates there, i said let us have the same environmental policies and programs there that we have in the u.s. why not? we are not required to but what a difference it makes. people understand we're treating them with dignity. >> i'm glad you're doing that. mexico is taking a lot of our jobs. they have lower pollution standards so american companies move there, pollute more and then lose our jobs so you're doing the right thing. an 80-year-old company. you're making a lot of -- you've got a lot of factories in a lot of places including passaic, new jersey, right down the block from us here, but also in north carolina and vermont, and even though you're 80 years old, you're one of the biggest exporters to china. >> we are.
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to be a manufacturer in the united states is not easy. when i started many years back, we had 31 plants. actually i purchased that plant in passaic. today you can't operate with 30 plants. today we have now consolidated into six major operations in the united states and, as you said, we are now 73 locations in china and 60% of the product is shipped from our u.s. facilities. if somebody had said to me five years back that we'll be shipping thousands of lamps from passaic to china, i'd say you're crazy but that's what we're doing. >> another thing i want to talk about that i think is pretty remarkable, you've always said look at the correlation with the stock market. now, the stock market has been bubbling up and you had at least going into the november -- at your november shareholder meeting. you're talking about the correlation still playing out. people come to the showroom when the stock market is doing better. >> absolutely.
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when you look at what we've done the last few years, the great recession hit us like a tsunami. we are down 40% in sales and we went from $103 million operating income to zero in two years. now two years later, last year we produced $15 million of operating income. this last quarter we produced $20 million in one quarter. our gross margins went from 50% to 55%. our operating income is increasing at 40%, 50%, showing the leverage -- >> leverage is huge for your company. i don't know if the analysts understand the concept of leverage. it's really quite huge. at a certain level it kicks in dramatically. >> consumer confidence is impacted by external factors. first we had the elections. i said okay, now we are through with elections. now this cliff business. and then we had sandy in the new york, new jersey, long island.
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but i think there's somewhat of a shorter term duration. people are interested in their homes, they want to furnish. in our case it's not something that if they delayed, they don't come back. it's a question of getting back. >> well, i think that -- i was surprised your stock sold off. i think it is because of the confidence issue. it's certainly not because of how you're doing. the retail looks good, the stores look good, merchandise looks good, you're doing a lot of things right. >> jim, another major advantage that we have is our service. we have now 1,200 interior designers that work for the company retail division, plus we have designers who work for licensees providing personal service of interior designers, white glove service to our consumers free, both complementary. it gives us a great competitive advantage because each interior designer is like an entrepreneur.
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in the last three years we've added 600. so we are positioned well. >> you're in very good shape. thank you also for bringing up the united way danbury to help out. >> it's always good to see you. >> "mad money" is back after the break. >> a thousand points in just a few minutes. >> machines gone wild. >> was there a glitch? >> never in history. >> have there been more doubts this this market. >> feel like the odds are stabbed against you? >> i know together we can win. >> jim cramer, leveling the playing field for all. >> mad money" kicks off weeknights.
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some guys just get it. the chief executive officer of conagra. the numbers were extraordinarily good. they make brands such as pam, swiss miss chocolate, hebrew national, marie callendar, most importantly healthy choice. the shareholders have been
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richly rewarded. a 14% gain going for this year and that's before the bountiful 3.3% yield, which of course means a big dividend. compare that with heinz up 9%, kellogg up 12, campbell's up 8, general mills 3, coca-cola and pepsico, about 6. it's really only hershey which has gained 20%, b&g and mccormick, the spice company, that are beating conagra. the best news here is i think it's not done. it's spending $5 million to buy the private label food product. that should make 2013 even better. let me walk you through the reasons why. first rodkin sees where the world is going. healthy choice is a fabulous
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choice for those who want to eat healthy and lose weight. rodkin is spending r & d. that was me dropping the swiss miss and then hitting my mic so it's a total calamity. conagra has been helped out by raw costs. it was once said that they were going through the roof. not anymore. finally with this ralcorp acquisition, they can compete in the hottest area, the private label brands. the consumers are strapped thanks to the lack of job growth. margins were never good in the supermarket business. and now that discounters costco, walmart, target have moved aggressively into the market,
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it's getting worse and worse. how are the supermarkets fighting back? private label. they're so much cheaper than the national branded clubs. pretty much the same, isn't it? the grocery stores love this stuff. carries much higher margins. that's why kroger has been the biggest seller of private label products. this move isn't lost on even the best operators. last night the ceo of whole foods told a story about his stores embracing private labels and they're fueling the bottom line in the supermarket business. now gary rodkin knows you need both. you need branded but you need private label. so again, that plays perfectly in conagra's branded and private label plans. here is a guy determined to reinvigorate his company and has now put it in the highest
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echelon, the elite of the consumers package good sector. stick with cramer. >> from our family to yours, happy holidays, cramerica. peace and prosperity from all of us here at "mad money."
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