Cramer’s Top Picks:Visa Inc. (V), MasterCard Inc. (MA) and Merck & Co.Inc. (MRK)

Heading into the close of the year, Visa Inc. (NYSE:V) and MasterCard Inc. (NYSE:MA) remain CNBC’s Jim Cramer top picks in the payment sector as both of them are poised to be at  the center of transactions this festive season. The ‘Mad Money ‘analyst on the hand remains skeptical about the auto industry especially Tesla Motors Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA)’s prospects going forward.

Visa, Mastercard, is MA a good stock to buy, is V a good stock to buy, Ed McLaughlin

“Between here and Year-end, MasterCard and Visa Inc. (NYSE:V) are going higher. The drillers and the autos and the Mineral stocks simply aren’t going to make the Playoffs […] So the need to be avoided and not bought

MasterCard Inc. (NYSE:MA) continues to guarantee shareholder value having already announced a 45% dividend hike with plans already in place to buy approximately $3.75 billion worth of own stock. MasterCard Inc. (NYSE:MA) is set to offer 16 cents in dividend per share, up from the previous dividend offer of 11 cents a share.

MasterCard is chasing Visa Inc. (NYSE:V), which hiked its dividend offer by 20% to $0.48 on October 22, 2014 having already authorized $5 billion repurchase program. Cramer skepticism over Tesla Motors Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA) going forward comes in the wake of reports indicating that Model-X unveiling could further be delayed.

“You are on your own on Tesla Motors Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA); that is one of the few cult stock that I don’t intend to address. I know people like Tesla Motors Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA) because they like the car. I am not a buyer of the stock but am not going to stand in the way of a cult stock,” said Mr. Cramer.

Tesla Motors Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA)’s release of Model X will depend on multiple factors like supplier readiness and completion of in-house validation as well as engineering completion. This is also expected to have a huge bearing on the stock’s performance going forward.

On the pharmaceutical segment, Cramer remains bullish on Merck that he believes has an impressive pipeline of drugs, which should give the stock an uplift going forward. The analysts also remains skeptical about International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE:IBM) prospects arguing the company does not have the earnings momentum that should justify a buy at the moment.

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