Trump could repeal enough regulations to give a $1 trillion boost to the economy, Zell said, adding he's more optimistic today than he was before the election.
He said deregulation can "achieve the same objective [and] really create stimulus and spend no money."
Zell recalled that a couple years ago, he thought the U.S. economy was in the late innings.
But now, the Equity Group Investments chairman said the Trump presidency is sending the late-cycle growth picture into "extra innings."
Still, Zell said overall he's been more of a seller of assets than a buyer in the past few years.
While describing himself as socially liberal and fiscally conservative, Zell said he likes Trump's choices on judges, and calls the president's Cabinet picks "great."