Tesla (TSLA) CEO Elon Musk’s sales process continues, to the dismay of Tesla investors who can’t seem to catch a break.
In a filing yesterday, Musk said he sold 22 million Tesla shares between Monday and Wednesday. The value of those Tesla stock sales was around $3.6 billion.
Tesla shares have been under heavy pressure over the past few days, with shares down 13% since the start of the week.
Musk’s stock sales have reached $23 billion since April, when he announced his bid to buy Twitter, and for the year Musk has unloaded $40 billion in stock. The recent selloff, combined with the weak performance of Tesla stock, has sent Musk to number two on the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. Musk’s total Tesla stake is now down to 13.4%, compared to 17% a year ago, according to Refinitiv.
The Twitter nightmare continues as Musk uses a Tesla as his own ATM machine.Dan Ives, Wedbush Securities
The big story here for investors is that Musk’s big stock sales are weighing on Tesla shares at the wrong time. Presumably the sale was made to fund Musk’s Twitter operations, but there is no official confirmation from Mac. The agony of the Twitter acquisition and Mook’s distraction from Tesla sent Wall Street and investors into a frenzy.
“The Twitter nightmare continues as Musk uses Tesla as his own ATM machine. [increasingly] Mask-driven,” Wedbush’s Dan Ives wrote in today’s note. At the end of April he announced that he was done selling Tesla stock, but the exact opposite happened and after Musk took over Twitter in late October, it put a lot of pressure on Tesla shares.
In a note yesterday, Goldman analyst Mark Delaney wrote that Musk’s presence on Twitter and engagement in politics has allowed Tesla’s brand to become “more polarizing,” weighing on Twitter’s distraction. Delaney said it was critical for Tesla to return the company’s consumer focus to its “core features of sustainability and technology” in order to exceed long-term expectations.
At least in the near term, concerns about slowing demand, rising prices, the cost of EVs in general, and a slowdown in the important Chinese market have put pressure on Tesla shares. Musk’s share sales seem to have added fuel to the fire.
Pras Subramanian is a Yahoo Finance reporter. You can follow it. Twitter And on Instagram.
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