Tesla Stock Down in Pre-Market After Elon Musk’s Twitter Followers Said He Should Sell 10% of His Shares

Paris: View from the street of new Tesla Model S showroom parked in front of the showroom with customers admiring the red electric luxury car.
AdrianHancu / Getty Images

Elon Musk, aka Lorde Edge, per his latest Twitter handle iteration, asked his 62.8 million Twitter followers via a poll, whether he should sell 10% of his Tesla stock. And they did.

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“I was prepared to accept either outcome,” Musk tweeted yesterday.

This has sent Tesla stock tumbling in pre-market.

Earlier in the weekend, Musk had tweeted that “Much is made lately of unrealized gains being a means of tax avoidance, so I propose selling 10% of my Tesla stock. Do you support this?” Musk tweeted over the weekend.

“I will abide by the results of this poll, whichever way it goes,” he added. “Note, I do not take a cash salary or bonus from anywhere. I only have stock, thus the only way for me to pay taxes personally is to sell stock.”

As of the close of the poll, there were 3,519,000 votes, with a majority of “yes” votes with 57.9% compared to 42.1% of “no” votes.

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Musk’s tweet comes amid a national debate about whether the wealthiest people in the country pay their fair share in taxes. The richest man on the planet, with a $338 billion net worth according to the Bloomberg Billionaire Index, took to Twitter last month to criticize Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon, chair of the Senate Finance Committee, for his proposed plan for a Billionaires Income Tax.

Last week, Hertz announced that it had acquired 100,000 Teslas in what represented the largest electric vehicle fleet in North America and one of the largest in the world, which sent the EV stock soaring.

However, another Musk tweet saying that the deal with Hertz had not been signed yet, sent Tesla’s stock down. Replying to a tweet about the stock being on a winning streak, Musk tweeted: “You’re welcome! If any of this is based on Hertz, I’d like to emphasize that no contract has been signed yet. Tesla has far more demand than production, therefore we will only sell cars to Hertz for the same margin as to consumers. Hertz deal has zero effect on our economics.”

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Tesla dropped as much as 5.2% that day.

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About the Author

Yaël Bizouati-Kennedy is a former full-time financial journalist and has written for several publications, including Dow Jones, The Financial Times Group, Bloomberg and Business Insider. She also worked as a vice president/senior content writer for major NYC-based financial companies, including New York Life and MSCI. Yaël is now freelancing and most recently, she co-authored  the book “Blockchain for Medical Research: Accelerating Trust in Healthcare,” with Dr. Sean Manion. (CRC Press, April 2020) She holds two master’s degrees, including one in Journalism from New York University and one in Russian Studies from Université Toulouse-Jean Jaurès, France.

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