Elon Musk sells $6.9bn in Tesla stock as Twitter trial looms

Billionaire Elon Musk sold almost $6.9 billion worth of Tesla stock in a matter of days as a trial looms for the CEO who abandoned a deal to purchase Twitter.

The world's richest man sold 7.92 million shares of Tesla between Aug. 5 - 9 that are worth $6.88 billion, according to six financial filings revealed by the US Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) late Tuesday.

Musk hinted that the amount could be used to uphold the purchase deal if he loses the lawsuit against Twitter.

"Yes. In the (hopefully unlikely) event that Twitter forces this deal to close *and* some equity partners don’t come through, it is important to avoid an emergency sale of Tesla stock," he wrote on Twitter early Wednesday when asked if he was done selling Tesla shares.

The business magnate sold $8.5 billion of Tesla shares in three days in late July, following Twitter's approval of his purchase offer, according to SEC filings. He also said, via Twitter, that he was not planning any additional sales.

Musk's latest move comes before his trial begins Oct. 17 against Twitter. He proposed buying the social media company in April for $44 billion, or $54.20 per share, but then walked away.

After Musk announced July 8 that he was terminating the deal, Twitter's stock plummeted to as low as $32.52 on July 12 -- a 40% decline from the offer price per share, according to official figures. Twitter sued Musk the same day to force him to complete the purchase.

While Musk accuses Twitter of failing to provide him information about the number of bots, spam and fake accounts on the platform, the company dismisses the accusations and claims that the number is well below 5% of total daily active users.

ePaper - Nawaiwaqt