Elon Musk sells another $7 billion worth of Tesla shares


Elon Musk Offloaded $6.9 billion worth of stock in Tesla Inc to raise cash ahead of a trial that could force the billionaire to follow through on a deal to acquire Twitter Inc.
Tesla’s chief executive officer sold about 7.92 million shares during the last three days of trading, according to a regulatory filing. Musk, who still owns about 15% of the electric-car maker, tweeted that he had completed the sale and would buy Tesla shares if the Twitter deal didn’t close.
“In the (hopefully unlikely) event that Twitter forces the deal to close *and* some equity partners don’t go through with it, it’s important to avoid an emergency sale of Tesla stock,” Musk wrote.
Tesla rose 3% to $875.51 at 9:50 a.m. Wednesday in New York, while Twitter rose 3.2% to $44.19.
Musk has now dumped nearly $32 billion worth of Tesla shares since November. The world’s richest man said less than four months ago that he had no more stock sales planned and has since tried to wrap up his $44 billion acquisition of Twitter. The social media company has sued to force Musk to go through with the deal, and a trial is scheduled for October.

“He’s cashing in for Twitter,” said Charu Chanana, strategist at Saxo Capital Markets Pte in Singapore, who believes Musk may be trying to take advantage of Tesla shares rebounding to about 35% since late May. “The bear market rally has begun to wane, and further repricing of Fed expectations could mean more pain for equities ahead, especially in tech.”
Investors suspected that Musk, 51, had offloaded Tesla stock, with 68% of 1,562 respondents to an MLIV Pulse survey last month saying they were likely to sell more regardless of what happens with the Twitter deal.
“Musk said at a Tesla shareholder meeting that any weakness in the stock price was a buying opportunity, and then began selling the stock himself 24 hours later,” the report said. Jim Dixon, Senior Equity Sales Trader at Mirabaud Securities. It is “highly unlikely” that Musk is offloading the stock, Dixon said.
Musk can keep selling Tesla with or without Twitter: MLIV Pulse
Tesla’s market fortunes have been tied to the Twitter deal since Musk made his surprising overtures in April. The carmaker’s shares initially fell on concerns that the business would distract it and the risk associated with margin loans it wants to offset against its Tesla stake. Shares rallied when Musk abandoned plans to borrow and said within weeks that he wanted to close the transaction.
When Musk abandoned plans to partially fund the Twitter purchase with a Tesla margin loan, he increased the size of the equity component of the deal to $33.5 billion. It had earlier announced to seek equity commitments of $7.1 billion from investors including billionaires Larry EllisonSequoia Capital and Binance.
Over the weekend, Musk tweeted that if Twitter provided its method of sampling accounts to determine the number of bots on its platform, “the deal should go forward on original terms.”
The Twitter deal contained a provision that if it fell apart, the breaching party would pay a termination fee of $1 billion under certain circumstances. Legal experts have debated whether the conflict over spam bots is enough to let Musk walk away from the deal.
Musk’s selloff of Tesla stock began after he polled Twitter users on whether he should cut his stake. It is by far the largest shareholder, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Musk’s tweets explain the reason for the sale by commenting earlier, Jean MunsterA managing partner at Loop Ventures, said he puts the odds that the billionaire will buy Twitter at 75%.
“I’m shocked,” Munster said. “This is going to be a headwind for Tesla in the near term. In the long term, it’s all about delivery and gross margin.”
Musk’s $250.2 billion fortune is the world’s largest, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, although his wealth has fallen by about $20.1 billion this year due to a drop in Tesla stock.
The carmaker’s shareholders approved a three-for-one stock split last week, a move designed to attract more retail investors. Tesla’s better-than-expected second-quarter earnings have been a tailwind of landmark US legislation that includes tax credits for electric-car purchases and loans to companies that build plants that make clean vehicles.
Musk tweeted separately that Tesla would begin shipping its semi truck later this year, then Cybertruck In 2023. It had previously said that both would go into production next year, along with the new Roadster model.

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