- Carl Icahn expects stocks to fall, inflation to linger, and the US economy to suffer more pain.
- He built a Twitter stake before Elon Musk’s offer, and may have put up $1 billion if asked.
- Icahn teased past bets against crypto, and said he was not surprised by FTX’s collapse.
Carl Icahn warned that stock market’s epic rally will not last, called on the Federal Reserve to keep raising interest rates until inflation breaks down again, and issued a gloomy outlook for the US economy in recent CNBC interview.
Billionaire investor and chairman of Icahn Enterprises as well disclosed he said we bet against the S&P 500, may have shorted cryptocurrencies in the past, and may have put $1 billion behind Elon Kasturi’s Twitter bid if the CEO of Tesla had asked him.
Here are 14 of Icahn’s best quotes, edited slightly for length and clarity:
1. “I’m still a bit bearish on what will happen. A rally like this is certainly very dramatic to say the least, but you have them all the time in a bear market, and I still think we’re in one. bear market.”
2. “Whenever you have high interest rates that have moved as they have here, you have an inverted yield curve, Treasuries near 5% yield – you will have a recession.”
3. “There is a way to go down because inflation is not going away for the near term, and you will have more than a recession, more than a decrease in earnings”. (Icahn discussed the outlook for the stock.)
4. “I don’t think inflation is over. If I look through the ’70s, it took years and years and years – you can’t wave a magic wand and get inflation over with.”
5. “The fed should keep raising. If not, then it is going to be worse for the future. They have to cure this inflation. This is not something where you just take magic poison and get rid of it.”
6. “There are many things that must happen to turn this economy around, to get us out of a recession.” (Icahn flagged several headwinds including continued wage inflation, and a blow to household wealth from stocks and falling home prices.)
7. “I’m short the S & P 500. S & P has got a lot of tech stocks that are too high for the most part. I think those with high interest rates, they’re not worth what they’re selling for.”
8. “A lot of people called me about it and wanted me to do something about it as an activist. I’m traveling and seeing it. started buying shares. I thought I would try to get on that board.” (Icahn was referring to Twitter.)
9. “I was really happy that Musk came along. He stands for the same damn thing, and he is much richer than I am. I feel that he is a perfect fool to do it. And he does not need money.” (Icahn shared Musk’s concerns that Twitter restrict users’ freedom of speech on their platforms.)
10. “No one ever called me in. I could have done more if he called me. I could have put $ 1 billion in it, at the right price.” (Icahn was asked why he was invited to participate in Musk’s $44 billion bid for Twitter.)
11. “I think it can overflow. This is just one of the dangers you have in our economy.” (Icahn was discussing the implosion of Sam Bankman-Fried’s digital-asset exchange, FTX, and the crypto selloff it sparked.)
12. “I’m a smart idiot. I tried to figure out crypto and why it’s valuable, but I couldn’t understand what it really had to offer. So I never bought any crypto. In fact, I might have shorted it. once or twice.”
13. “If you look at crypto, you look at ethereum, you look at these companies. What do you do if you don’t like the way it’s managed? This is a lawless area. There’s no responsibility that I can see, and I still don’t see it.”
14. “I’m not surprised that this happened because there really are no rules, no laws. It’s like the Wild West.” (Icahn refers to FTX.)