Trump: Markets in a 'big, fat, juicy bubble'

Amid another battering for stocks Monday, billionaire businessman Donald Trump contended that markets still look overvalued.

"I hope I'm wrong, but I think we're in a big, fat, juicy bubble," the Republican presidential candidate said on CNBC's "Power Lunch."

Major U.S. stock averages were down more than 2 percent each Monday afternoon, continuing a rocky year in which the S&P 500 has fallen 10 percent. Fears about slowing growth in the United States and around the globe have contributed to the recent selling.

Trump, who was in New Hampshire ahead of Tuesday's primary voting, criticized the state of the economy and touted his plans to trim U.S. tax rates and increase competitiveness with China, which has had recent problems of its own.

Presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during the Republican U.S. presidential candidates debate in Manchester, New Hampshire, Feb. 6, 2016.
Carlo Allegri | Reuters
Presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during the Republican U.S. presidential candidates debate in Manchester, New Hampshire, Feb. 6, 2016.

Trump's promotion of his economic policy comes after he finished second in last week's Iowa caucuses to Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas. Despite his slip in Iowa, the bombastic Trump holds a solid lead over Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida in recent New Hampshire polls.

The billionaire called the January U.S. jobs report released Friday a "phony deal," saying that the headline unemployment rate does not include those who have stopped looking for work. The U.S. economy created 151,000 jobs in January as the unemployment rate fell to 4.9 percent, but a broader measure of unemployment held steady at 9.9 percent.

President Barack Obama had a more optimistic take on the reading, saying the U.S. has "the strongest, most durable economy in the world."

"I know that's still inconvenient for Republican stump speeches as their doom and gloom tour plays in New Hampshire. I guess you cannot please everybody," he said Friday.

For all of his criticism of Obama's handling of the economy, Trump agrees with the current commander in chief that attempts by U.S. corporations to keep money overseas should be limited.

Trump said he would seek to curb so-called tax inversions, in which companies carry out an acquisition and change their tax address to potentially pay lower rates abroad. He said that if elected, he would attempt to cut taxes for businesses to keep tax money and jobs within the United States.

"We have to try to keep our companies here," Trump said.

He said that cuts to encourage businesses to stay in the U.S. would coincide with broader reductions for the middle class. Trump's plan, while lowering individual income taxes, could reduce tax revenues by more than $10 trillion over the next decade, according to a Tax Foundation analysis last year.

Trump also outlined his plan to levy tariffs on Chinese exports to reduce the effects of currency devaluation. He has proposed a tariff of as much as 45 percent on Chinese exports to the U.S., according to The New York Times.

"It's impossible for our businesses to compete" currently, Trump said Monday.

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, Trump's Republican rival, criticized his plans in a CNBC interview Monday. He contended that Trump does not have "an economic policy that's grounded in solid, conservative principles."

Trump said that Bush is "not a very smart person" and does not understand his plan. Trump said that the U.S. "has to get (China) to behave."