Elon Musk explained that he had liquidated part of his shares for fear that a recession like the one in 2009 could be repeated. “I had to prepare for the worst”.
Since the beginning of the year, Elon Musk has sold tens of billions of dollars’ worth of Tesla stock. Partly because he was forced to do so in order to be able to pay tax charges triggered on the expiry of some options and partly to finance the onerous acquisition of Twitter.
Tesla has almost halved the value of its shares since Musk bought the social network and, precisely because of the stock market crash, the billionaire is no longer even the richest man in the world, a title that was snatched from him by the high fashion Bernard Arnault.
Elon Musk recently participated in a Space on Twitter, i.e. the rooms dedicated to voice chats/conferences introduced to follow in the footsteps of Clubhouse success. On that occasion Musk promised that he has no intention of selling his shares in Tesla again.
“I don’t intend to sell shares for, I don’t know, at least another 18 or 24 months,” he promised. “You can count on it, no stock sales before 2025 or anything like that. I had the need to sell some shares, to prepare for any eventuality. But I won’t be selling again for probably at least two years from now. I certainly won’t be selling anything next year, for no reason at all. I probably won’t sell shares the following year either.”
Musk added that he had liquidated part of his shares due to the very strong pause of a new scenario similar to that of 2009. “Honestly, I’m quite paranoid, I can’t not be after having witnessed two very severe recessions in my professional life “. For the same reason, Musk had announced before almost any other CEO that his companies would soon be leaving a large number of employees at home. “If a situation like that of 2009 is repeated, all share prices will sink much lower.”
As the Electrek website points out, Elon Musk had already publicly pledged several times not to sell his shares in Tesla. He had done so after selling over $1 billion in stock last summer when he was due to exercise his stock option, only to go back on his word just a few months later.