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Sam Zell curses Obama's stimulus bill, argues that Trump can do better

  • President Trump has given Main Street and Wall Street "hope and optimism" on the economy, billionaire real estate investor says.
  • Sam Zell says the Trump presidency is sending the late-cycle growth picture into "extra innings."

President Donald Trump has given Main Street and Wall Street "hope and optimism" on the economy, billionaire real estate investor Sam Zell told CNBC on Tuesday.

In an interview on "Squawk Box," Zell called former President Barack Obama's $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 a "half-a----d stimulus bill."

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."

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