NEW YORK — Hedge fund titan Leon Cooperman said he's concerned about a move to the left in the political landscape, which could harm the economy and the stock market.
"There's unquestionably a shift to the left in this country," Cooperman said at the Delivering Alpha conference presented by CNBC and Institutional Investor. "They won't open the stock market if Elizabeth Warren is the next president," he joked.
"You don't make the poor people rich by making rich people poor," Cooperman said. "The Democratic Party seems to be leaning towards the left on policies, which is very harmful for the economy. I don't like the shift to the left."
They'll open the market if Warren wins, it will just be "a hell of a lot lower," Cooperman later said on CNBC. "It would be a bear market and they go on for a year and go down 25%," Cooperman said.
Warren, a Massachusetts senator, has been moving up in the crowded Democratic presidential field, polling only second to former Vice President Joe Biden in a new NBC/WSJ poll. She has been a champion of the left wing for her bank bashing and wealth tax proposals.
Warren has made aggressive economic populism the signature of her White House bid. She has proposed a wealth tax on assets above $50 million and a minimum tax on the profits of the largest corporations, to help finance new government benefits for child care, health care, housing and education.
"Her policies are counterproductive," Cooperman said on CNBC. "They're negative for capitalism, and capitalism is what brought America into the position we're in today."
In an interview with CNBC in January, Warren said, "I want these billionaires to stop being freeloaders."
Cooperman, CEO of Omega Advisors, said the market is still "in a zone of fair valuation," but the policies of the left could be detrimental to the stock market going forward.
"It looks like she's a credible alternative; I think the stock market will run into some problems," Cooperman said. "Biden's OK; he's a centrist ... but I don't know that he's acceptable to the progressives."
Warren's campaign did not respond to a request for comment.