Following a Twitter poll held last week, Tesla CEO, Elon Musk has sold around $5 billion worth of his shares in the electric car division.
According to papers filed with the US stock market regulator, Elon Musk’s trust sold roughly 3.6 million shares in Tesla valued at approximately $4 billion.
He also sold another 934,000 shares worth around $1.1 billion after exercising options to buy nearly 2.2 million shares.
In the Twitter poll held over the weekend, Elon Musk had asked his 63 million Twitter followers whether he should sell 10% of his stake in Tesla.
The result from the poll showed 57.9% voting in support of this action and 42.1% voting against it.
This sale comes after the electronic car division’s stock dropped by roughly 16% in the two days following the Twitter poll, before retracing and reclaiming some ground on Wednesday.
However, this is not surprising
This development isn’t particularly surprising since Elon Musk had previously announced he was ready to sell a substantial block of Tesla stock publicly.
The SEC filing also confirms that some of the shares sold had a pre-determined sale date of September 14, making his Twitter poll nothing more than a show.
The billionaire also stated in a September interview with tech journalist, Kara Swisher that a large portion of his stock options will expire in August 2022, and that he will sell them in Q4.
The sale of Mr Musk’s shares in the late hours of Wednesday was his first stock sale since 2016, when he last exercised a stock sale option. He had sold some of the shares to satisfy a nearly $600 million tax liability at the time.
The Tesla CEO has disclosed that he is not paid in cash by Tesla: “I only have stock, so selling shares is the only method for me to pay taxes personally.”
As part of his most recent stock sale transaction, he used stock options that he was given by the automaker as part of his salary package in 2012.
Income taxes are triggered by such transactions, which are normally paid with funds earned by the prompt sale of part of the newly acquired shares.
With a stock valuation of over $1 billion, Tesla still remains the world’s most valuable carmaker.
With a personal fortune estimated to be more than $280 billion, Elon Musk is still the world’s richest person.
Elon Musk still holds 166.9 million Tesla shares and also owns roughly 48% of SpaceX, which has a $100 billion valuation.
Mission to International Space station
Speaking of spaceX, late on Wednesday, NASA and the commercial rocket firm, SpaceX sent four people into orbit.
An experienced spacewalker, two younger crewmates picked for future lunar missions, and a German materials scientist made up the crew on board. They are currently en route to the International Space Station.
The astronauts will spend the following day strapped into their spacecraft as it moves through orbit and prepares to connect with the International Space Station (ISS), which is more than 200 miles above Earth’s surface.
This mission, Crew-3, is the fourth joint mission between SpaceX and NASA to undertake regular flights to the International Space Station in order to ensure the 21-year-old space station is appropriately manned.
The mission has been hampered by a series of weather delays since its planned launch window on Oct. 31.
One postponement earlier this month was due to an unidentified medical concern with an astronaut, though NASA stated the issue was remedied afterwards.
Docking at the International Space Station is scheduled for 1:10 a.m. WAT Friday.