twofer. ester esterline technologies. a defense stock we don't talk about. >> the first time you've ever mentioned the stock -- >> a first for everything. like finerman's fine print in the finaltrade. >> "mad money" begins now. my mission is simple. to make you money. i'm here to level the playing field for all investors. there's always a bull market somewhere. and i promise to help you find it. "mad money" starts now. hey, i'm cramer! welcome to "mad money," welcome to cramerica. i'm trying to help you save some money here. my job is not just to entertain but to educate and put in context. call me 1-800743-cnbc. if you shock them into action then it's good for stocks no matter how it's done or where it's done for that matter. yep, today we got a magnificent
rally here! dow surging 260 points s&p rising 1.5% and the nasdaq gaining 1.78%. because mario draghi recognizes the low to no level of economic growth was just unacceptable. so he's throwing a trillion euros at the problem to stimulate the more abundant economies, even if it means taking down a lot of debt so more products can be sold overseas. will it work? oh for heaven's sake who knows. the fact is six years after our central bank decided it's not acceptable to have high unemployment, the europeans, maybe even the germans, they're getting the message. hey, worked for us. stop debating that. it did. could work for them. it's occurring not a moment too soon, though. you will hear a lot of whining from people who clearly don't own any stocks this is all bad. where will it lead to interest lates are too low. they're too low already and this
is papering over the problem. i could care less. i'm here to help you make money. i'm no professor. let me explain something. we are so lucky in this country. things go wrong with the current guys, we throw them out and put the other guys in. when things go wrong in europe some new party comes in that represents some unholy political extreme and civil unrest occurs. that's certainly better than china, where they execute people for missing the quarter and face a possible overthrow. it is a reminder that europe has a big political and economic issue over there, and draghi will stop at nothing. he will indeed invoke the dictum of malcolm x by any means necessary to get some job growth and head off the extremists that work on the sidelines on any country in the continent. that's the issue. enough in europe. you know how i always say in big selloff a lot of stuff goes down that shouldn't be with bath water kind of thing. the bristol-myers theorem. where i ask if the more onic market know what it's doing. the proximate cause of the
selloff has nothing to do with the price earnings ratio of bristol-myers. it's the same deal with rallies. two sides of the same coin. the proximate cause of this rally is the central banker who wants to throw trillions of euros to get some growth going. anyone who owns stock wants growth. but the collateral damage here is the weak euro. and i have to tell you, that weak euro along with a lot of weaker currencies, is really starting to kill a lot of our companies. today because of the lockstep nature of stocks they all go up with stock futures like today. a lot of stocks actually went higher that shouldn't have gone higher including many that will go gown perhaps precipitously when they report their earnings. in fact all you have been hearing, if you are on these quarterly conference calls, is the moaning and groaning of how hard it is to do business overseas, because of the weak euro and how the translation back into dollars is crushing profitability. they keep talking about currency headwinds. i heard the word " -- i've been
doing textual analysis seeing four or five times in a conference call this word "headwinds." i say you've got to take heed to bob dylan. you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows. i think it's become obvious who is going to make the quarter and who isn't. you don't need an analyst to tell you where the number cuts are coming from. the answer, my friend is blowing in the currency headwinds. caused by the relentlessly strong dollar today being a prime example. we all want to visit europe. we don't want our companies doing business there. we are seeing this dollar issue creeping up everywhere and it's become a gale force headwind for many international companies based here. the strong dollar american express last night sure didn't help themselves by having a slow december and blaming the consumer. the strong dollar annihilated johnson & johnson's quarter. although, again, i was surprised by the slowing growth there. i was surprised by that quarter. we know the strong dollar
blasted ibm's earnings. but then again, they have become an excuse machine and a serial misser of their targets. a waste of a whole set of technology companies that are reporting you're in the teeth of it. you can barely tell today, because every stock went higher. that's the opportunity to lighten up on the ones that shouldn't. and then after hearing all this whining about the headwind the headwind, the headwind you get on the almost entirely domestic united health conference call. unh. this is like house of cards to me. this is like breaking bad. these kinds of conference calls, they're dramas they're dramas. and they're not tragic dramas. they're comic dramas. you don't hear about headwinds. you hear about secular tail winds like managing cost controls. that's how a stock goes up without a takeover bid. listen to gary kelly, ceo southwest air and sellstells the story of the dramatic drop in fuel cost. double whammy. that's how you get the number one performing stock in 2014 up another 8% today. you hear no apologies oral buys
or explanations or foul weather forecasts from these kinds of companies. you hear how it was a great quarter and the next will be even better. how about what we heard from northern trust? key bag, wow! they understand bob dylan. they don't have the subterranean hope sick blues. they live here. their businesses as you will hear shortly are strong because they have nothing to do with europe or the euro. they aren't trading foreign currencies. i don't know if they'll take them. they aren't even being hurt that badly by -- anymore by that low interest rate environment they make in deposits and they make it up in all sorts of forms of growth that are spurred by higher stock prices and, of course, cheap energy. and, and glory be. how great, how fabulous. how wonderful was union pacific? and how lucky are shareholders they can't build railroads overseas? that company is on fire with so many cargos going into high
single digits. how about wendy's? i know mcdonald's supports tomorrow, and i think the charitable trust actually owns it for the yield. and a chance for direction maybe at the top there. change. but it's wendy's that hit a new high today. congratulations. you know, let's see. wendy's, mcdonald's. what do they do? they both make burgers. one makes burgers here the other guy makes them over there, too. put aside that wendy's taste better. let's say you want to sell burgers domestically now, you don't want to sell billions and billions overseas. give me an american first burger. hold the biggy fries. oh, and here's some truth. if you are in a real growth business, if you're in something that isn't competitive with others, and is necessary to living like netflix, up big again, you don't have the currency head winds either even if you're overseas. you don't have comparisons that make the winds relevant. you don't need to baton down the hatches. and if you don't have winds at all if you're in biotech like two small biotech companies we talked on the show yesterday,
they serve unmet needs of people around the globe and aren't bound by currency issues. here we are a few weeks into currency season and i have had enough. don't outthink it. they go up again tomorrow. everything else better just hope they don't mention the weather report when they report. maybe what we need to do is put together an investing cocktail using a combination of bob dylan's meteorological prowess and george washington's admonitions from his farewell address, where he asked, plaintively and no doubt rhetorically why in heck should we en tangle our peace and prosperity in the toils of european ambition? makes sense to me. that guy had game. it's becoming too hard at least from what now seems like lofty levels to feel at all confident about these international bow home as. the head winds have hufd and puffed. if you don't want to get hurt stay indoors or at least indoors in america. let me give you the bottom line. the market gave a reprieve. you need to ask yourself after today are you too internationally oriented.
we will be stuck with a vicious headwinds from overseas in the same domestic tranquillity earnings by lower oil and believe me there is plenty to choose from. ted in michigan. ted! >> caller: yeah. >> you're up ted. >> caller: oh, i'm sorry. thank you for taking my call jim. i'm currently on a fixed income. and although i have a little extra cash i am extremely worried about growing inflation and interest costs. >> okay. >> caller: i was wondering, i'm thinking about gold or silver. i would go with gold except it's kind of high price. what is your thought about protection against inflation? >> i always think that every portfolio -- now, periods like now, gold is like insurance. you're not -- it's not being used. fortunately, you don't have to use it. but the gld is at $125, and i like that. i like when people say jim is there any gold stock you like. i like rand gold because dr. mark bristow, he's no sissy, he
knows where to drill. yes, let's go to john in new york. john! >> caller: boo-yah, jim. >> boo-yah, jim. >> caller: i have read all your books and treated them like textbooks. and i have a problem. rich kinder ceo of kinder morgan is stepping down. >> yeah i know bum arooney. >> caller: he will remain as chairman and be involved with mergers and acquisitions. he believes in kmi enough that he has never sold a single share of stock. can we violate your sell when a ceo steps down rule? it is rich kinder after all. >> i found myself pondering the same exact question john. and then i realized that when he said that he understands texas and he intends to die with his boots on i knew that rich kinder is going to be in there every step of the way, kmi and i wanted to redouble. i wanted to double the position the charitable trust has in kmi. rich kinder we trust you. we know you're not going anywhere. but you like to give the other guy a break too. and that's okay with us.
how about dave in florida? dave! >> caller: boo-yah! >> boo-yah, dave. >> caller: family dollar stock. i've had it for quite some time. and they're merging -- well dollar tree is taking over. it's supposed to be a merger. i would like to know what you think of that. should i hold my stock? >> dollar tree is going to be a huge winner under this. i happen to like dollar jen too, owned by the charitable trust. dollar tree -- we had a great dollar tree in south philadelphia. great candy. i put them on twitter. i think this combination is going to be amazing. family dollar is not that good an operator and dollar tree, you can eat candy off the floor. not that you should do that but in my dollar tree clean as a whistle. on the shore is good too. i go there july 4th and memorial day. the market gave a break today. but still too hard to love the international. i suggest getting indoors in the great us of a.
mad tonight, ceo of united rentals. crushed the quarter, but the stockstill dropped. and the regional bank is flying high on monster results. plus could your car be taken over by cyber terrorists? i've been thinking about that and you should too. and that's why we have the ceo of harmon on and the future of audio. stick with cramer. >> don't miss a second of "mad money." follow @jimcramer on twitter. have a question? tweet cramer hash tag madtweets. send an e-mail to cnbc.com or give us a call 1-800-743-cnbc. miss something? head to madmoney.cnbc.com.
listen up. okay? sometimes i get steamed here. sometimes the market doesn't know anything. it doesn't seem to care about a company's sales, even if they're great or their earnings if their fabulous, because it's so fixated on just one little thing and gets it wrong all of the time. i want you to think about united rentals, uri, largest in the world, makes its money renting out equipment and machinery to
various construction firms industrials, utilities manufacturers, home builders government entities. unfortunately, though, united rentals also has a business small business where they rent equipment to oil companies. and because of that limited oil exposure with actual exploration and production customers accounting for just 6% of their sales, this stock has been eris advice rated from highs of 119 late november to $86 as of today. united rentals reported last night the company delivered a 12 cent earnings beat off a 2.07 basis, rental rates up and management reiterated its guidance for 2015 at a moment when many thought the numbers would be cut because of the 6%! what happens? after opening up strong stock got slammed, closing down 1.75%. as management talked about the possible impact of lower oil prices on their conference call this morning. of course they addressed it. their honest guys. even though they think the damage should be manageable and being outweighed by the strength
of the rest of the business especially nonresidential construction. even though they have a $150 million buyback, all wall street seems to care about is the limited division. has the time to take action appeared? is this the right entry point? let's take a closer look with michael neely, president and ceo, a straight shooter. welcome back to "mad money." >> good seeing you. >> first of all, thank you for coming on. >> thanks for having me. >> you have told our viewers straight the whole way. so i'm going to look at you and i'm going to say, is it possible that the decline in the price of oil is going to stimulate so much more business including nonresidential construction, that we may never even know you had this 6% nonsolution in oil and gas? >> absolutely. we do believe that low price of oil, going into the consumer -- our economy is 70% consumer-driven. it's a positive effect. it's going to be a positive effect with housing and that's going to trickle down to multiple industries including
chemicals, which really benefit hugely on the fact that oil prices are low. >> do you think if you had not bought that division your stock would have been at 150 today? >> you know that's a great question. you know when i sat here before and i told you about the pump business, if you recall, 6% of their business overlapped into our core business. >> it was something you had to do for your core customers. it was not some brand-new initiative. >> no, but the opportunity was enormous and it was the biggest rerental item we had. so the idea was to cross-sell that product line through our broad operations, and that's our goal. >> as it is you broke it down with a fine-tooth comb and said 15% is collateral damage and took it lower, and said the potential negative impact is just $36 million earnings before interest taxes, depressionation. how much is $36 million in the vast scheme? >> if you think about it we
said our estimate for next year is $3 billion, eebda. so a little over 1%. >> all right. so there's two ways we can approach it. we can talk about how whoa is me, or you have -- i saw your debt ratios i saw how strong they are. i know you have that buyback. why don't you finish the buyback in the next three months or maybe even three weeks and come right back into the market because you've got the fire power, unlimited fire power. >> it's always a consideration. keep in mind we are going to spend money, about $1.7 billion, because we do see the economy working in our favor. >> right, right. that's important. hey, you know what we ought to do? we ought to talk about the other 94% of the business. i see nonresidential construction and architectural buildings off the charts and speaking of regional bankers, first time they're seeing high single digit loan demand. when someone wants to put up the project, they can go buy the equipment or go to you and rent it. >> absolutely. >> which is cheaper? >> rent absolutely. >> and how about the
maintenance? >> not only maintain it, insure it haul it around and the efficiency is not there. and when you look at all these bumps in the road plays well into our industry. >> let's be psychological about it. are we in a situation where if oil jumps $10 people buy your stock? that's what i was thinking before i came out here. >> you know it's an ongoing debate. i have no clue. we're trying to figure out, you know only 6% exposure. why is it driving it? what's -- why isn't this buckled? we don't know. i think there is more of a fear factor out there as related to oil, whether it's demand or whether it's supply. what's driving the price down? >> right. and that's up to debate. one of the things i'm trying to think is where is our country at this moment? i think our country is getting stronger by the day, because of this lower energy price. let's talk about that chemical side. there are lots of companies that want to do business here. i keep hearing it. why? because our natural resources. are you getting orders from
say, foreign companies who want to build things here? are you getting orders in the southeast from companies you never did business with before? >> absolutely. we said that before. that we're seeing an investment offshore investment, coming back to the u.s. not only in chemicals, but also in auto motive in a big way. and so we see that continuing to play out. >> would you ever double down on oil and just say, forget you, market you don't understand? i'm going to take advantage of the bankrupt guys. because there are going to be guys who are going to go bankrupt. i saw rich kinder buy $3 million asset. he stole it! because he doesn't care what the nit-pickers think. is this a chance to do that? >> it's always -- we're always you know veryin i didn't say active about opportunities. >> because you get a lot of companies. >> yes, our cash flow is there. we'll look at the opportunities. if it makes logical sense, we'll be players in that market. >> did the market know how to handle your stock today? >> obviously, i don't think so. >> all right. that's what i care about. because you've been right every time i've talked to you. that's mike kneeland.
if you have a 48-minute horizon, you might want to buy the stock. after the break, i'll try to make you more money. still to come. your commute may be about to change lanes in the future. cramer speaks with industry leader harmon to hear how new technologies could impact its bottom line and your drive home. just ahead.
♪ could this be the moment to circle back to one of my favorite stocks, harman international, maker of high-end auto speakers car stereos and top-notch professional grade equipment, as well as being a key member of info containment systems that integrate everything smartphone. it's the number one business where they compete. truly proprietary. the stock has been slammed ten points over the last two months. i don't know people worry about weakness in europe or something. harman reports a week from today, and this company has a long history of delivering up side surprises. the reason i want to highlight today, harman announced two breakthrough acquisitions symphony teleca 7 to $80 million, and provider of software management technology. $170 million. with these two details, harman
is trying to take control of its destiny. let's take a closer look with the chairman and ceo of harman international industries to hear more about what these two acquisitions means for the company's prospects. welcome back to "mad money." >> thank you. >> tremendous presentation tremendous conference call. i know red bend is not as big as symphony. i worry if i get a driverless car, the car of the future i'm going to be hacked. my computer has been hacked my credit card has been hacked. this has got anti hacking car software. >> this is so big for us this is so big for the industry. cars were never designed -- typical, mid end, high end car, has 70 to 80 computers inside and the programs the firmware were never designed to be connected to the cloud. these days we all hear connected car, connected car, which means connected to the big pipe. now you are starting to bring in good data good well-intentioned media, but bad guys are also into that and they want to have a pileup.
this is like a terrorist attack. >> yes. >> waiting to happen. unless we do something. so right now, a lot of quest to find a technology solution and red bend has two problems solved. one, it actually updates the software and firmware and apps in the car on a need basis. and secondly it is actually doing cyber security software based on proven technology we used in banks and computers. >> i thought this was a palo alto networks for autos. >> we're excited about that. >> you should be. let's talk about symphony. i look at you -- diverse customer base. and i get it. land rover, jaguar terrific. but comcast, google xbox. what are you doing with them? >> so it's very interesting. the symphony teleca what they do they actually specialize in the mobile devices and big data and mobility and cloud.
so they are actually doing a lot of prod product conversions work for microsoft, adobe and google particularly for google a very big example to describe. so google has an droid operating system almost 300 projects to take google android and network, to take it into the projects work for the telecommunications the handset providers and also the carriers. and also they are becoming the scaling partners. so take google and android, scale it for multiple other companies. same thing they do for the cloud, scaling for microsoft. that's for xbox and other devices. scaling on the back end. >> okay. if that's the case that is a much bigger total addressable market than harman plays in currently. >> potentially, very big, but we would like to allow them to focus where they have been good so far. and i hope that with this merger of these two companies, they will be able to use all of the resources harman has, and big
role detection and also large access to the companies like bmws and toyotas, what have you, where independently, they might not have that access. so we see a message here once we integrate the company. >> totally. i also want people to know how forward thinking you are. i mentioned to you last time you were on i had gotten this neil young sound system and some people say the sound system isn't great -- what my ears are lying? it's fantastic. because i wanted the equivalent of high-def sound in cars. you were making it so that that can be an offering in the not too distant future. >> neil and i, two companies that actually had a number of meetings. and i love his passion, because it's pretty much -- goes along with what we have been advocating. >> you are a passionate man. when you have a new speaker, you tell me to hear because you know it's going to sound better than what the other guys have. >> so neil and i, we're trying to bring in first of all, download capability of high
definition music. what we are doing as the largest car audio company, we are providing high definition audio playback capability in the car, which never existed. we provide that in high-end home system, but you need to come up with 20 $30,000 for high-end amps and what have you. so cars want to have these. in addition, you might have heard from neil when he was here or coming here first time in the industry coming out with independent sound zones. so in the car, you could be making phone calls in the back seat i would be doing something else. so four people can do four different things without disrupting anybody, and maintaining confidentiality. so this is again, the technology, the digital signal processing. so with neil we have a common goal, bring and democratize this high-definition audio. because televisions mean nothing if you have a lousy sound coming from them. >> totally. >> so they have to be brought together so that's why we have a goal and we're going to get there. >> everyone is talking about currency.
you are really the brains for a lot of these great german and japanese cars. as their currency goes down i mean i have to believe they're going to sell more cars because a benz gets cheaper, beamer gets cheaper and that means more harman systems. >> we sure like to think that way, and so we have translationally -- people translate, and transactionally do hedging. but you're right. oil price is dropping and euro dropping against the dollar is a good thing for germans to sell and particularly oil going down more people can afford the cars with the feature function national that harman brings. >> you can afford the additional option package. that's what i like. thank you. that's what i've got in my car. chairman and president of ceo of harman, i'm glad you and neil got together because i want one in my car. >> i want one, as well. >> it's dynamite! stay with cramer. still to come. watches, phones cars
you want to know my favorite semiconductor stock for 2015? easy. that's cyprus. cy for your home gamers. this company makes the touch screen chips for nearly nonapple smartphone and tablet out there. they sell programmable systems on a chip. these are small semiconductors used in all kinds of devices. they make controller chips for everything from usb devices to applications. they are the maker of static random access memory chips. at the beginning of december, they announced a $4 billion merger of equal sesspangs and they have been huge winners. i want you to stick with cyprus while we wait for the transaction to close and it's run by the great tj rogers who will go on to become the ceo of the combined company. cyprus reported its revenues came in higher than expected and the company said the merger which has been cleared by
authorities in the u.s. and germany, would be additive to earnings within the first year. it's going to close sooner than i thought. therefore, the stock climbed 4.66% today and it's up 40% since he told us hey, you ought to load the boat up. he was more up side. let's check in with dr. tj rogers founder and president and ceo of cyprus semi conductor to find out more about the expansion deal. dr. rogers welcome back to "mad money." >> thank you. >> first tj i want to congratulate you. when we saw you last the stock was between 9 and 10. you said it's been the best performer of any semi conductor stock i follow and maybe best of all the companies i follow. i want to know when you look at the merger the analysts talk about synergy of dollars. i think you were hinting there was a intellectual merger that is going to make your company and them much stronger. it's not just the synergy numbers. >> that's true. you know the synergy numbers
from a cost point of view if you can ring $135 million bucks out of a company over thee three years, that's puts a few numbers on the bottom line ca-ching ca-ching. in the longer haul the next couple years, the real winners will be if the one plus three is three, to use the old phrase. and i believe that's going to be the case. for example, we're the world leader in static random access memories. s-rams are the memories that computers talk to and exchange data back and forth. when you add two numbers together in a computer, you put them in s-ram, add them in the computer and put the answer back into s-ram. and they make flash memories the things below a computer that put instructions in a computer. so the code that runs the computer comes from their memories. they're number one in the world in nor flash. combined, we will be able to go to people that need these memories for computers and sell both memories. and that's one example of synergy. automotive is another example, where they acquired fujitsu
semiconductor a couple years ago, and this will get us with our automotive products into japanese companies, where it typically takes five years to penetrate. so there are a bunch of things that are going to happen on the one plus one equals three side that are above and beyond the cost reductions which are significant. >> well, and another thing that happened in this conference call. we talked about p-sock. i kind of actually stopped talking about it because i thought it was too prosaic. you were calling it the hot chip, which i thought was great. but because of the internet it seems to be central to the next generation internet. >> yeah. programmable be system on chip. maybe we overreached a little -- we didn't overreach. we said something, but it was too arcane. this allows you to put everything on a chip and the printed circuit board is the size of a postage stamp and put a battery on the back. and for the internet to have sensors around you need that with a radio on it to put data
to a central internet node and put data on the internet. and p-sock is designed to do that. and we're starting to see that take off right now. and wearables is another example. you've got something on your handled, it measures something about your body your heart rate, whatever and then it talks to the bluetooth in your cell phone and puts the data on the internet through the cell phone. and we're starting to see that turn on for us as well. so the internet of things kind of seems to have been made for p-sock. >> now another thing that a lot of people are looking at these headlines saying disappointing quarter, missed a number all nonsense. i was blown away. your free cash flow increase was remarkable. is that -- not just because of your op ex coming down but you're generating more cash than you used to. >> we're generating more cash than we used to and the big reason is we're not taking the cash and plowing it back into buying fab equipment. we are -- we make about 40% of our chips in a fab that is highly efficient.
and we now buy our chips. and by the way, our revenue numbers, dead in the center of the estimates. >> oh, yeah i know the headlines are stupid. you did break out and say, listen if you x out emerging tech, to me it sounded like expansion deal you spend the money, break that out, a whole new company, and you're not going to get two -- you're not going to get just expansion and cyprus but is that possible? >> that's true. if you -- emerging tech are start-ups and investors bring break-through technology to market. the fact is, the company at 55% gross margin on its chip business 95-plus percent of our business, and the startups cost us a couple pennies per share and cost us a couple points on gross margin. but underneath, the chip business, which is the bulk of who we are now, is very healthy. and the startups are going to be a big deal in the future. so we reported good results with upside for the future. >> well look i want to congratulate you. you made it clear to all our viewers, you were all in.
and you were all in at 9 and $10. this a very big gain. t tj rogers president and ceo of cyprus semiconductors, thank you for coming on "mad money." >> thank you. >> this merger is not done. it's going to get finished earlier. it's going to be auto. it's going to be touch. it's going to be everything having to do with the wearables we talk about. it's just a breakout semiconductor situation and i want you in it. "mad money" is back after the break. tomorrow quick off the trading day with "squawk on the street." >> i plan to die with my boots on. in other words, he's not going anywhere. so stop fretting and start buying. >> it all starts at 9:00 a.m. eastern.
the lightning round. nick! >> caller: yes, jim! what do you think about budweiser? >> i like bud, because i like beer. but i've got to tell you, i'm a constellation man. because i see the way the modelo nigro blow out. constellation coming to get you. keith! >> caller: hi, jim. i want your take on blackstone. >> the only private equity company i recommend is blackstone. they've got real smart guys and a lot of horse sense there. let's go to bob in new york. bob. >> caller: boo-yah, jim. i've got a substantial position in csx long-term. >> it's okay. i prefer union pacific. why? i like the better mix of cargo. the cargo in union pacific has it all over csx. it's that coal factor. let's go to dennis in florida. dennis!
>> caller: altera. is there a place i should sell or can i hold that long-term? >> altera the semiconductor company? no -- altria! yeah! tobacco. unfortunately, people still smoke. the other day i asked, how much is a pack of cigarettes. the guy said $10.26. with tax, $11.90. how much do you have to pay to kill yourself? i can do that for nothing. but anyway the stock is good. let's go to mark in wisconsin. mark! >> caller: jim, i was wondering what your thoughts were on flex electronics. >> the stock should be higher. enough already. the company is buying the stock, in every single different part of technology. they are the internet of all things! let's go to court in kansas. >> caller: my wife and i watch your show every night and we're both really, really big fans. >> thank you! >> caller: my question is about mankind corporation.
>> yeah. i don't know. we've got stocks like bristol-myers. why do we have to go with mankind. we do not. no, i'm not going to recommend that stock. pankiss in north carolina. >> caller: boo-yah, jim. thanks for taking my call. >> you're welcome. >> caller: my question is about gen tech? >> this is a process company i have liked for ages and will continue to like. no reason to sell. i want you to buy, buy, buy! and that, ladies is the conclusion of the "lightning round" round"! >> the "lightning round" is sponsored by td ameritrade.
♪ all right. we all know that the big international banks rollout overseas exposure of trading stuff. but the regional banks is another story. look at k keycorp, up 7.6%. it's a cleveland based regional bank with roughly 1,000 branches across the pacific northwest, midwest and northeast. and this morning the company reported a strong quarter that allowed them to rally. key delivered a 2 cent earnings with higher than expected revenues. the company's net interest income increased by 1% in spite of the low interest rate environment thanks to higher loan fees. and much of the strength coming
at the end of the quarter. no wonder the stock went through the roof. it was almost like it got a takeover bid. let's dig deeper with beth mooney, the ceo of keycorp to hear about the company's prospects. ms. mooney welcome back to "mad money." >> thank you, jim. glad to be back. >> congratulations on having the best quarter so far of all of the regionals. i wanted to know are we going back to 2013 when you led the whole pack? >> you know we had a strong finish to what was a good year. we were pleased with our absolute performance and absolutely, as you said we had some relative outperformance in this quarter. so i think it bodes well as we go into 2015. >> yes. are we out of the tyranny where we decide whether someone is good and going back to growth? because your growth was exceptional? >> net interest margin really does reflect a lot about the interest rate environment liquidity, where you're getting your asset growth. so i do think a focus on are you growing revenues is probably a better indicator than margins.
>> all right. how about efficiency? i know you have been -- very strong in efficiency. can that keep up? at a certain point, you're running an efficient bank. how do you get even more efficient than where you are? is. >> we've talked a lot about over and above efficiency as a positive operating leverage. are you keeping your revenues faster than allowing your expenses to increase. and our beat was on a revenue beat on well-controlled expenses so that operating leverage is really critical to how you drive efficiency more than just the ratio. >> i thought it was interesting you highlighted 12% increase in commercial, financial, and agricultural loans. who are the commercial financial and agricultural loan kind of customers you're dealing with? >> you know broadly, that's a technical term on our balance sheet. it really is a proxy for our commercial customers across our community and corporate bank which was a 12% growth 13 consecutive quarters in that area where we have been growing. and it really helped contribute to our level of investment
banking and placement fees. the virtue of the model of being a commercially oriented bank. >> a lot of people during the great down turn said perhaps it's time for keycorp to break up, maybe it's too big. i'm thinking this is time for the offensive. i saw russell goldsmith selling out. i'm involved with two separate banks, one in new jersey and one in pennsylvania. both got bids within the last two weeks. is it time to start buying? >> it has been a slow m & a environment as you noticed in the down turn of the financial crises. there is not a broad base of swell of m & a activity going on. they tend to be single purpose or idiosyncratic sorts of deals. i don't know that we're seeing a return to m & a, but i think you're starting to see banks get themselves positioned for not only good organic growth but being in position for inorganic at some point. >> i would think, because you point out several times in the conference call, the midwest remains a competitive area.
there are other areas of this country now relatively unbanked or only banked by the big guys two or three banks. isn't that where keycorp could come in and be a community bank for these areas? >> our geographic diversity, which people have debated is whether or not is a strength or not, i look at as absolutely a strength. to be across a variety of markets and in different competitive environments. it's true we can come up against the big guys and be the community bank in an area and grow and expand clients. i actually say we could have opportunities over time across multiple markets. >> one last question beth. i know we went out to do a show from the utica shale. we couldn't get it to a hotel room, and there was all the planes booked. and i just know that utica is part of your bailiwick. how much do we really have to be worried about the oil and gas down turn at keycorp? >> you know the oil and gas down turn won't affect keycorp. only 2% are in oil and gas loans and we talked about that today
in our call. we monitor it it's well-secured, well-reserved. we don't consider it an issue. i see across both oil, as well as the gas industry clearly capital spending is slowing down. i think it's a net positive to our broader economy. but i see more a slow down in investment than i see in production at this point in time. so i think the big issue is how low for how long and that will be what we'll have to watch over time. >> well, you're always a straight shooter once again. congratulations on almost 8% gain in one day. beth mooney thank you for coming on "mad money." >> thank you, jim, and thanks for your support. >> of course. stephanie link and i, action alerts plus are frozen. this is the one to buy. i think this the one with the most up side of the regional banks. stick with cramer.
cheapest semiconductor stock out there. if key pulls back that could be an opportunity to own with actual growth. united rentals, uri, way too low. harman reports next week. take a listen. huge day tomorrow on "squawk on the street." all eyes on starbucks. don't miss howard schultz at 10:00. and then the ipo everyone is talk about is box. drops tomorrow. we're going to be talking to ceo aaron levie. i want you to hear what he has to say so you can know this story. what am i doing later, you ask? of course i'm watching an all new "breed" he's got 70 new models. all new "american greed." i'm jim cramer. see you tomorrow!
>> narrator: in this episode of "american greed"... the romano brothers of long island are working the phones, selling $75 million worth of coins to eager and naive investors. >> the salesmen knew who they could trick and confuse, and they kept going back to the well. >> narrator: but when the family's arrested for mail and wire fraud, joseph romano wants payback from the ones who put him away. >> a total of $40,000 would be paid for the killing of the judge and the prosecutor. >> narrator: prison cameras catch romano plotting with a hired killer.