Amid yet another huge boom in share prices at Tesla, CEO Elon Musk has confirmed that he will be selling 10 per cent of the stocks he has in the company he leads.
The decision came about in perhaps the most Musk way possible; via a Twitter poll.
Tweeting to his followers over the weekend, Musk posted the poll, saying “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?”
Over 3.5 million people voted in the poll, with a narrow majority of 57.9 per cent voting yes. “I was prepared to accept either outcome” he wrote after the poll closed.
Musk reportedly owns around 23 per cent of Tesla’s stocks (around 170.5 million shares), with Reuters claiming that this stock sale could net the tech industry magnate approximately US$21billion.
As per Musk’s note in the poll, the news comes as American president Joe Biden tries to crack down on billionaires; specifically their unrealised gains through things like wealth generated by owned stocks.
Senate finance committee chairman Ron Wyden referenced Musk specifically on the weekend, given Musk’s current position as the world’s richest person, ahead of Amazon’s Jeff Bezos and Microsoft’s Bill Gates.
“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,” Wyden said. Musk is evidently not a fan of the proposal, saying “eventually, they run out of other people’s money and then they come for you.”
It’s been a very interesting period for Tesla’s stock prices.
News recently broke that rental car company Hertz would be ordering 100,000 Tesla Model 3s in a bid to make its fleet more environmentally friendly. It wasn’t until after the news went far and wide that it was announced that the deal was far from done.
In the midst of increasing criticism of America’s billionaires, Musk also recently said that he would sell US$6billion worth of Tesla stocks and donate the proceeds to the United Nations’ World Food Programme if the organisation could show how that money could solve world hunger.