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Jim Cramer on Hertz seeking to sell 247 million new shares

CNBC’s Jim Cramer joins “Squawk Box” with his first take of the day ahead of the market open.

Shares of Hertz surged Friday morning on unusual plans for the bankrupt company to sell up to $1 billion in shares, a last ditch effort for it to raise capital even though the value of the stock could get wiped out.

During premarket trading, shares were up more than 70% to $3.56 before leveling off to open at $3.21 – the latest speculative surge since the company filed for bankruptcy on May 22. Shares were lower but still up about 35% in trading to $2.78.

The car rental firm in a public filing Thursday asked the bankruptcy court to potentially sell 246.8 million unissued shares to Jefferies LLC.

“The recent market prices of and the trading volumes in Hertz’s common stock potentially present a unique opportunity for the debtors to raise capital on terms that are far superior to any debtor-in-possession financing,” the company said in the filing, which the court is yet to make a decision regarding.

Hertz said the net proceeds would be used for general working capital purposes. The filing was on an “emergency basis given the volatile state of trading in Hertz’s stock.”

CNBC’s Jim Cramer questioned the company’s plans Friday morning, relating it to a circus.

“The question is did P.T. Barnum become the CEO?,” Cramer said during CNBC’s “Squawk Box.” “No, it’s someone else. How do you like that? Maybe they ought to bring in P.T. Barnum because that’s exactly what it takes to have the guts to be able to do that offering. I mean there’s a possibility that it’s worth nothing.”

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The only way it works for common shareholders of Hertz is if there’s somehow a sudden surge of rental and the company undoes the bankruptcy, according to Cramer. The move, he said, is a positive for large bondholders because there’s more money coming in.

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