Jim Cramer explains why he's not too worried about market breadth right now

On Monday's episode of "Mad Money," host Jim Cramer explained why he's not too concerned about the stock market's breadth and urged viewers to not stray too far "from the beaten path." Sign up and learn more about the CNBC Investing Club with Jim Cramer https://cnb.cx/3Ei22n4

CNBC’s Jim Cramer said Monday he’s not too concerned about weak market breadth, particularly ahead of the Federal Reserve’s final policymaking meeting of the year and a potentially more hawkish posture from the central bank.

“We can make money with a narrow market or one that has better breadth. We just have to recognize that as long as we have good earnings, which we do, and we have a Federal Reserve that’s not carpet-bombing the economy, assuming that’s still true on Wednesday, ... then there will be plenty of studs to pick from,” the “Mad Money” host said.

Cramer emphasized the need to own top-tier stocks, or the “studs” as he calls them, because there’s a better chance that the Fed moves up its timeline for interest rate hikes.

“Don’t go too far off the beaten path for now,” he said. For example, he said there are upstart companies involved in marketing and database management, “even though we’ve already had better versions of the same thing like Salesforce, Shopify or Oracle.”

“These better versions have much cheaper stocks — they trade on today’s earnings, not tomorrow’s sales,” he said, contending that’s an especially important criterion for successful stocks in a higher interest rate environment.

If the Fed does, in fact, embark on a hawkish tilt, Cramer said investors will “have fewer winners to pick from. There will still be studs, but the supporting cast will be smaller and many other players won’t be as productive — they might even go negative.”

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