Good morning. Amid headlines of doom, gloom, and confusion in Washington, billionaire hedge fund manager David Tepper is long.
“I don’t think the market’s cheap,” he told CNBC on Wednesday morning, “but you can’t be short in that kind of environment.”
And this environment, he says, is a stabilized China, a steady Japan, a growing US, and a calendar with no troubling macro events in sight, aside from the French election.
“Not one more regulation is happening and … you have tax cuts coming here,” he said. “So unless there’s a mess-up in the administration … Unless that happens, nothing’s going to get in the way until inflation starts picking up.”
When it does, the Fed will tighten (as by Tepper’s estimation, it should have been doing more aggressively up to now).
And risks? What risks? Tepper thinks the administration has gotten past starting a trade war with China. And while Trump’s new immigration ban isn’t palatable to him personally, he thinks it’s fine for markets. He’s hoping for peace with Mexico.
Other than that … gravy.
A few more key points from the interview:
- Tepper thinks it should be easy for Republicans to get tax reform through the legislature. He thinks far-right candidate Marine Le Pen will win the French election. He also thinks, however, that her rival Emmanuel Macron could be a positive for the economy. Tepper went long pharmaceutical companies like Mylan, Pfizer and Teva, according to recent government filings. He said it was mostly a play on Allergan and his belief that those stocks fell too far in the fall. He also seemed unsure on his Teva bet, saying, “Sometimes I think it’s cheap, and sometimes I look at it and I wonder why it’s in my book.” He’s short bonds and long European equities (“I may lose my behind”). He thinks the border adjustment tax being floated by House Republicans could be good for the American economy as long as it’s implemented over five years: “It’s not that complicated … and it doesn’t necessarily mean that Americans pay more.” Tepper is fully confident that “Paul Ryan and his friends” will carry it out intelligently. He has an “interest” in Snap and bought some in the IPO, but he wants the stock to go lower. Tepper has a dog named Benji. Tepper described it as some kind of Yorkie/Shih Tzu something … Sounds ferocious.
All in all, Tepper’s super bullish. He even chastised everyone on the down. “Everyone has to be on the negative side of life,” Tepper complained to the “Squawk Box” crew.