CNBC Exclusive: CNBC Transcript: Icahn Enterprises Chairman Carl Icahn Speaks with CNBC’s “Fast Money” Today

WHEN: Today, Monday, January 9th

WHERE: CNBC's "Fast Money"

Following is the unofficial transcript of a CNBC EXCLUSIVE interview with Icahn Enterprises Chairman Carl Icahn on CNBC's "Fast Money" (M-F, 5PM ET) today, Monday, January 9th. Following is a link to the story on CNBC.com: http://www.cnbc.com/2017/01/09/carl-icahn-trump-can-stop-this-idiocy-with-overregulation.html. Following are links to the video on CNBC.com: http://video.cnbc.com/gallery/?video=3000582550 and http://video.cnbc.com/gallery/?video=3000582551.

All references must be sourced to CNBC.

MELISSA LEE: CARL ICAHN JOINS US NOW EXCLUSIVELY ON THE FAST LINE. CARL WELCOME AND GREAT TO SPEAK WITH YOU ESPECIALLY ON AN IMPORTANT DAY FOR US HERE.

CARL ICAHN: OK CONGRATULATIONS, AND HOPE YOU GET ANOTHER TEN YEARS PRETTY QUICKLY.

LEE: WE HOPE SO TOO. TEN YEARS GOES BY PRETTY QUICKLY. LET'S TALK ABOUT THE MARKETS BECAUSE YOU'VE SAID VERY RECENTLY THAT YOU'RE CONCERNED ABOUT THE MARKETS. WHERE DO YOU SEE THEM STANDING. WE'VE BASICALLY BEEN AT A STANDSTILL SINCE THE MARKETS HIT CLOSE TO A RECORD HIGH JUST ABOUT A MONTH AGO. WE HIT A NEW RECORD HIGH LAST WEEK. WE'RE SPUTTERING ALONG AT THIS POINT.

ICAHN: YEP. I DON'T REALLY HAVE A GREAT VIEW OF THE MARKET. I THINK THERE'S GOING TO BE SOME BUMPS ALONG THE ROAD AND, YOU KNOW, THAT'S PAR FOR THE COURSE, RIGHT? YOU KNOW, THE MARKET DOESN'T GO ONE WAY FOREVER. BUT IT COULD GO CERTAINLY A LOT HIGHER BEFORE IT HITS THE BUMP. SO NOBODY REALLY CAN CALL THE MARKET ANYWAY ON A SHORT PERIOD OF TIME, OVER A SHORT PERIOD.

LEE: LET'S TALK ABOUT THE AREAS IN THE MARKET WHERE YOU HAVE THE MOST POSITIONS IN THE NATURAL RESOURCES AREA. DO YOU BELIEVE THAT THIS REFLATION TRADE CONTINUES. THAT HAS BEEN A MAJOR TRUMP RALLY TRADE SINCE HE CLINCHED THE VICTORY?

ICAHN: YEH BUT I REALLY DON'T HAVE MAJOR POSITIONS IN NATURAL RESOURCES. WE OWN REFINERIES AND WE OWN SOME OIL. BUT WE'RE SORT OF IN A LOT OF THINGS. SOME OF IT PRIVATE COMPANIES. AUTOMOTIVE. AND WE HAVE A LOT OF AIG. SO THERE'S, THAT'S PUBLIC. I'M THINKING OF THE PUBLIC ONES. WE HAVE A LOT OF OTHER THINGS TOO. I HAVE A BIG HEDGE AGAINST THEM. AND THAT'S WHERE WE REALLY STAND. OKAY, SO THAT'S --

LEE: SO LET'S BE SPEAK SPECIFICALLY ABOUT SOME OF YOUR HOLDINGS. YOU'RE GOING TO BE AN ADVISER OR AN ADVISER TO THE PRESIDENT-ELECT AND ONE OF YOUR MAJOR CAUSES IS TO GET THE RINS HALTED BECAUSE IT HURT SOME OF THE SMALLER AND MEDIUM SIZE REFINERS LIKE A CVR WHICH YOU OWN 82%. IS THAT YOUR NUMBER ONE REASON WHY YOU SIGNED UP TO BE AN ADVISER FOR TRUMP? IS THAT YOUR TOP PRIORITY?

ICAHN: IT'S NOT -- YOU KNOW, MAYBE IT SOUNDS CORNY BUT IT'S NOT A PRIORITY AT ALL. EVERYBODY IS MAKING SO MUCH OF IT. THAT IT SORT OF COMPLETELY OFF BASE. YOU KNOW, I KNOW DONALD AND I THINK HE'S A SMART GUY. I THINK THIS COUNTRY WAS GOING DOWNHILL FAST AND I STILL THINK IT'S GOT PROBLEMS. SO I REALLY BACKED DONALD, NUMBER ONE I THINK HE'S SMART AND ONE OF THE FEW PEOPLE THAT CAN SHAKE UP THE ESTABLISHMENT AND STOP WHAT I CONSIDER TO BE ALMOST IDIOCY WITH THIS OVER REGULATION. NOW THERE WAS SOME VERY GOOD REGULATIONS AND, IN FACT, I DO BELIEVE THAT YOU NEED WALL STREET REGULATIONS FOR SOME EXTENT SO I'M NOT AS MUCH ANTI AS SOME PEOPLE BUT SOME OF THEM WE'VE RUN A WE'VE RUN AMUCK. SO YOU HAVE THIS TREMENDOUS WEALTH GAP IN THIS COUNTRY. DEMOCRATS HAVE DONE NO FAVOR TO THE LOWER MIDDLE CLASS GUY AND,THEREFORE, TO ME IT WAS SORT OFA NO BRAINER THAT IF YOU'RE A MIDDLE, LOWER MIDDLE CLASS PERSON WHY WOULDN'T YOU VOTE FOR DONALD? NOW, I FEEL -- I MEAN AGAIN MAYBE AT THE RISK OF BEING IMMODEST, MY RETURNS HAVE BEEN AN AVERAGE OF 68 WHEN I STARTED THE FIRM, ANNUALIZED RETURN OF OVER 28%. AND I LOOKED IT UP THE OTHER DAY, IF YOU HAD BOUGHT THE STOCK -- IF YOU LOOK AT THE CAPITAL IT'S GONE UP SHAREHOLDER INCREASE, IT'S INCREASED, CLOSE TO TRILLION DOLLARS, 500 BILLION TO A TRILLION IN THE LAST FEW YEARS. WE'VE DONE A DAMN GOOD JOB NOT JUST FOR MYSELF WHEN I OWNED THE STOCK BUT FOR THE SHAREHOLDERS BECAUSE MANY OF THE COMPANIES WE GO INTO THERE'S A UNIQUE OPPORTUNITY TO GO BUY THE STOCK AND DO SOMETHING WITH IT AND DO SOMETHING ABOUT MANAGEMENT OR SOMETHING THAT MANAGEMENT COULD DO.

LEE: SO CARL, LET ME FLIP IT AROUND THEN. I MEAN, YOU JUST STATED YOUR RETURNS, WHICH ARE EXTREMELY IMPRESSIVE BY ANY METRIC. IF YOU'RE LOOKING AT THIS AS AN INVESTOR THINKING THERE ARE GOING TO BE MAJOR CHANGES TO THE WAY WE DO BUSINESS HERE IN THIS COUNTRY UNDER A PRESIDENT TRUMP, WHAT WOULD YOU INVEST IN BASED ON THAT? WOULD THE TOP INVESTMENT THESIS BE DEREGULATION OF WALL STREET, DEREGULATION OF THE OIL INDUSTRY? WHAT WOULD IT BE?

ICAHN: WELL, TO BEGIN WITH, AND I'VE SPOKEN A LOT ABOUT IT AND IT'S TRUE. I OWN A REFINERY, BUT THAT'S NOT A MAJOR POSITION FOR ME. BUT I WOULD TELL YOU THAT WHAT THE EPA HAS DONE IS REPREHENSIBLE IN THE WAY THEY HAVE POLICED WHAT THEY ARE DOING. I'M NOT AGAINST THE RFS, I'M NOT AGAINST THE CLEAN AIR ACT. BUT I AM AGAINST THE WAY THE EPA OPERATED IN IT. AND IT'S SORT OF UNIQUE – IT'S LIKE REYNOLDS TOBACCO, WHEN I SAID YOU HAVE SPLIT NABISCO OFF. YOUR COMPANY IS WORTH SO MUCH MORE YOU ARE GOING TO ENHANCE VALUE FOR NABISCO AND FOR EVERYONE. SAME THING. YOU HAVE TO REIGN IN THE EPA AND REGULATE IT. AND IF ANYONE KNOWS THAT AREA, AGAIN, AT THE RISK OF BEING MODEST, I THINK I'M A SMART GUY. I'VE DONE LOTS OF WORK ON A LOT OF THESE REGULATIONS THAT YOU HAVE, AND, THEREFORE, I WON'T TELL YOU GO BUY REFINERIES TOMORROW BECAUSE THERE'S A LOT OF OTHER FACTORS THERE, BUT I WOULD SAY THAT YOU TAKE COMPANIES IN THAT REFINERY INDUSTRY, AND IT'S NOT JUST MINE, THAT HAVE BEEN CRIPPLED BY THE EPA. AND THERE ARE OTHER AREAS LIKE THAT IN THIS COUNTRY. NOW, IF YOU HAVE A BUSINESS NOT PERCEIVING THEY ARE AT WAR WITH GOVERNMENT, BY BEING OVERREGULATED, I REALLY DO THINK THAT'S A GREAT THING FOR OUR ECONOMY. AND IT WILL CREATE JOBS BECAUSE IT WILL CREATE INVESTMENT. AND PEOPLE COME IN AND THEY KEEP SAYING OH MY GOD, ICAHN OWNS A REFINERY, HE SHOULDN'T BE ALLOWED TO ADVISE. WELL, WHO THE HELL SHOULD ADVISE IF IT'S NOT SOMEBODY THAT KNOWS THE INDUSTRY. IT'S LIKE SAYING JAMIE DIMON OR BRIAN MOYNIHAN, TWO VERY SMART GUYS THAT I RESPECT AND YOU SAY, HEY, THEY CAN'T ADVISE BECAUSE THEY OWN BANKING STOCKS AND THEY ARE CEOS. AND BY THE WAY, I'M NOT TELLING DONALD WHO TO APPOINT AND, IN FACT, YOU KNOW, THEY MAKE A LOT OF THE FACT THAT PRUITT GOT THIS JOB. I NEVER KNEW PRUITT. DONALD ASKED ME TO SPEAK HIM TO AND I SPOKE TO HIM A COUPLE OF TIMES, BUT I NEVER KNEW PRUITT. SO, SOME OF THE CRITICISMS I FIND TO BE ALMOST ABHORENT.

LEE: SO CARL, LET'S SWITCH GEARS A LITTLE BIT. I WANT TO TALK ABOUT APPLE WITH YOU. YOU HAD BEEN A SHAREHOLDER OF APPLE. YOU SOLD IN APRIL OF LAST YEAR. YOU SOLD PRIMARILY ON CHINA CONCERNS. AT THIS POINT WHEN YOU TAKE A LOOK AT THE STOCK IT'S STILL TRADING AT A PRETTY CHEAP VALUATION HERE. MAYBE THE CONCERNS OF CHINA ARE WORSE. I'M NOT SURE. YOU SAID THAT YOU EXPECT A TRADE WAR WITH CHINA. HOW DO YOU LOOK AT THE SITUATION WITH CHINA? IS THAT ENOUGH FOR YOU TO – HAVE THINGS GOTTEN WORSE, BASICALLY, UNDER POTENTIAL TRUMP ADMINISTRATION WITH CHINA FOR TO YOU SAY YOU KNOW WHAT I'M NOT GOING TO GO NEAR STOCKS LIKE AN APPLE THAT MAY HAVE SIGNIFICANT DEPENDENCE ON CHINA.

ICAHN: WELL, I HAVE TO TELL YOU THAT I'M NO GREAT EXPERT ON CHINA AND I'M THE WRONG GUY TO ASK. YOU KNOW, WE BOUGHT CHINA – WE LIKE TO DO THEM WHEN NOBODY WANTS THEM, WHEN THERE WERE PROBLEMS THERE TO SOME EXTENT. AND THAT'S WHAT I DO. I BUY THEM WHEN NOBODY WANTED, IT WAS ON A DOWNSWING WHEN I DID IT. AND PEOPLE WERE NEGATIVE. A LOT OF PEOPLE NEGATIVE ON IT. WELL, NOW THE STOCK, WE MADE A HUGE PROFIT ON IT, OBVIOUSLY. AND, BY THE WAY, THE SHAREHOLDERS IN IT PROFITED QUITE A BIT. I THINK I WAS SOMEWHAT HELPFUL IN GETTING THEM TO DO A MAJOR BUY BACK WHEN IT WAS MUCH LOWER. AND SO, THEREFORE, YOU KNOW, I GENERALLY SELL TOO SOON. SO IN THIS CASE, I DON'T THINK I SOLD IT REALLY TOO SOON. SO I'M NOT THE ONE TO ASK ABOUT APPLE. NOW, I THINK IT'S A GREAT COMPANY. AND I THINK TIM IS VERY GOOD.

LEE: WOULD YOU LOOK AT IT AGAIN GIVEN THE CASH IT'S GOT AND THE POTENTIAL EASING UP ON REPATRIATION?

ICAHN: I PROBABLY WOULDN'T LOOK AT IT UNLESS IT WENT A LOT LOWER. BUT THAT'S ME.

LEE: OK. YEAH.

ICAHN: THAT DOESN'T MEAN IT'S GOING LOWER.

LEE: YEAH. AND JUST ONE LAST QUICK QUESTION, CARL, BEFORE YOU GO. THERE WAS A RUMOR A COUPLE OF WEEKS BACK OR MAYBE A WEEK AGO THAT YOU WERE RUSTLING AROUND IN GILEAD. ANY TRUTH TO THAT?

ICAHN: NO.

LEE: OK. YOU HEARD IT FROM THE HORSE'S MOUTH.

ICAHN: I DON'T THINK I CAN SPELL IT.

LEE: THAT'S ONE REASON NOT TO BE IN. CARL, THANKS SO MUCH FOR PHONING IN. ALWAYS LOVE TO TALK TO YOU.

ICAHN: OK. SURE THING AND CONGRATULATIONS AGAIN.

LEE: THANKS SO MUCH. CARL ICAHN OF ICAHN ENTERPRISES.

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