Bill Ackman Backed Into a Corner on Herbalife (HLF), Icahn Tells CNBC

August 30, 2016 12:45 PM EDT

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(Updated - August 30, 2016 12:47 PM EDT)

Bill Ackman is the one backed into a corner on Herbalife (NYSE: HLF), Carl Icahn told CNBC a few short days after the billionaire raised his stake the embattled nutrition company by 2.3 million shares and denied reports he was looking to sell his large stake in the company.

"If anyone should feel boxed in, it's Ackman," Icahn said in an exclusive interview with

"Ackman is an astute student of the market, as I am, and I think he would probably agree that there is very rarely if ever a company with the short interest as it was just announced of 27.2 million shares of the 92 million shares outstanding. Of the 92 million, there 20 percent to 25 percent that are closely held."

He added, "I don't believe any professional short-sellers, would ever take a position in a company with these numbers... As the old saying goes, fools will go where angels fear to tread."

With the comments, Icahn is hinting at a short squeeze in the stock, which StreetInsider discussed yesterday.

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