Elon Musk sells $5bn of Tesla shares after Twitter poll – The Street Journal

The world’s richest man and Tesla chief executive, Elon Musk, has sold shares worth $5 billion, days after setting off a Twitter poll, asking if he should sell 10 percent of his huge stake in the electric carmaker, in which millions voted.

The billionaire, with a net worth of around $300 billion, sold 4.5 million shares this week, according to regulatory filings made on Wednesday, AFP reports.

The company’s shares fell by around 16% in two days after the poll came out in favour of him selling shares, before regaining some ground on Wednesday, November 10.

On Saturday, Musk posted a Twitter poll asking his followers to vote on whether he should sell part of his stake in Tesla to meet his tax obligations.

“Much is made lately of unrealized gains being a means of tax avoidance, so I propose selling 10% of my Tesla stock,” he tweeted.

“I will abide by the results of this poll, whichever way it goes.”

The poll attracted more than 3.5 million votes, with nearly 58% voting in favor of the share sale.

Musk also highlighted that he is not paid in cash by Tesla: “I only have stock, thus the only way for me to pay taxes personally is to sell stock.”

Tesla is the world’s most valuable carmaker, with a stock market valuation of more than $1tn.

He also sold another 934,000 shares for about $1.1bn after exercising options to acquire nearly 2.2 million shares, according to filings with the US stock market regulator.

The stock sales documents showed that the sale of about a fifth of the shares was made based on a pre-arranged trading plan set up in September, long before Musk’s social media posts at the weekend about selling some of his shares.

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