Elon Musk’s bizarre tweets cost him $50 billion and the Tesla shareholders $200 billion: Here’s why

Two of the costliest tweets in history - and who else but Elon Musk, the world's richest man, to have bunged them in

Elon Musk | Two of the costliest tweets in history - and who else but Elon Musk, the world's richest man, to have bunged them in
Two of the costliest tweets in history - and who else but Elon Musk, the world's richest man, to have bunged them in

Elon Musk tweets about selling billions worth of Tesla stock surprised investors

World’s richest man Elon Musk made bizarre tweets and went in for a poll on the microblogging site a few days ago.

Musk tweeted, “Much is made lately of unrealized gains being a means of tax avoidance, so I propose selling 10% of my Tesla stock.” Musk asked by way of a ‘yes‘ or ‘no‘ poll on the microblogging platform over the weekend.

Not stopping at this, unsatisfied with the poll, the maverick mega-billionaire followed up six minutes later, stating: “I will abide by the results of this poll, whichever way it goes.”

The result out there in full public view was stark: 52:48 in favour of Musk selling 10 percent!

By then Musk had shut off any clause to escape the bears: “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.”

Tesla’s stock sank by $200 billion (market capitalization was $1,211 bn on Friday end of day and $1,023 bn on Tuesday 48 hours later) and Musk’s own net worth took a $50 billion toll.

Analysts were fumed over his employment of methodology as unscientific as a Twitter poll with a random lot of 3.5 million folks determining the outcome.

The context of Musk’s tweet is about growing ire against Big Tech and the uber-rich. It follows a proposal by Democrat Senator Ron Wyden to tax investments every year for US billionaires, unprecedented given that the US so far taxes stock investments only when they are sold.

Musk has publicly pushed back against Wyden. Wyden, chair of the Senate Finance Committee, hit back. Wyden tweeted, “Whether or not the world’s wealthiest man pays any taxes at all shouldn’t depend on the results of a Twitter poll. It’s time for the Billionaires Income Tax.”

ProPublica has claimed that Musk paid no federal income taxes in 2018, and his “true tax rate” between 2014 and 2018 was 3.27 percent. To determine what it is calling the “true tax rate,” ProPublica says it “compared how much in taxes the 25 richest Americans paid each year to how much Forbes estimated their wealth grew in the same period.”

Musk has contested ProPublica’s argument as “misleading” and “trickery.”

The one time world’s richest man Musk’s savage remark appeared to mock the so-called American billionaire tax proposal listed out in US President Biden’s one of the largest $2 trillion “Build Back Better” infrastructure package in the US history, approved by the Congress earlier yesterday. The domestic policy seeks to implement “billionaire tax”, an estimated 23.8% tax rate on the long-term capital gains on tradable assets for the big American tech giants. The tax would be levied on any billionaire that earns more than $100 million in annual income or owns $1 billion in assets. Addressing his 62.5 million Twitter followers on Saturday, Musk asked for the majority pubic opinion to decide the fate of a large chunk of shares for his Tesla holdings in the fourth quarter.

[With Inputs from IANS]

PGurus is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel and stay updated with all the latest news and views

For all the latest updates, download PGurus App.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here