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Elon Musk dumps another $4 billion of Tesla (TSLA) shares

Elon Musk sold $4 billion of his TSLA shares on April 26, 2022 to help fund his $44 billion Twitter (TWTR) acquisition.


Elon Musk has once again dumped Tesla shares. This time, the soon-to-be owner of Twitter sold $4 billion of his TSLA position, but don't worry he says this is the last time... For now.

Now, this is not the first time that Musk has sold shares of Tesla, with his first decision to sell shares being determined by a Twitter poll. This time, Musk is just straight up buying Twitter for $44 billion. It's important to note that Musk had told Tesla shareholders that "just as my money was first in, it will be the last out."

A lot has changed since 2013, and Musk has had no problem repeatedly going back on his word. As one of the wealthiest people on Earth, it appears that he wasn't busy enough. The executive runs both Tesla and SpaceX, but surely Twitter won't take up all of his time. Right?

Musk has been on a tear posting a combination of cringy tweets, memes, and statements about free speech. The future owner of Twitter has even gone on the offensive targetting employees at the company. Musk's recent attack was on Twitter's top lawyer Vijaya Gadde alleging liberal bias on the social media platform and blaming her. His ridiculous group of followers made it their jobs to attack and harass Gadde on Twitter.

Twitter reported Q1 2022 earnings results earlier today, and the company is still losing money from operations, which may explain the change of heart from the board of directors that lead to them accepting Elon's $44 billion bid for the company. Twitter (TWTR) has never been consitently profitable and just had to restate nearly 3 years of mDAU dislcosures. 

Tesla's chart over the past week showcases a world of pain for shareholders directly related to CEO Elon Musk's Twitter purchase.
Tesla's chart over the past week showcases a world of pain for shareholders directly related to CEO Elon Musk's Twitter purchase.

This evening's news that Musk dumped $4 billion worth of TSLA shares on April 26, 2022 is a gut punch to shareholders who have witnessed the CEO tweet the stock down nearly 15% this week. Some people want off the merry-go-round and who can blame them? Then again, Tesla's Q1 2022 financial results were pretty impressive with profits and revenues on the rise.

A lot of people like to compare Elon Musk to Steve Jobs, but he is honestly starting to look more like a supervillain or Howard Hughes. Musk's obsession with free speech, his willingness to engage right wing political pundits, and his extremely poor track record when it comes to dealing with critics could end up being his undoing. For now, he is left holding the bag that is Twitter. That is certainly one way to diversify.

Elon Musk has given society a lot of reasons to be skeptical of everything he says. Countless times he has been wrong about predictions, ranging from a prediction that COVID-19 would be gone by April 2020 and many delays of Tesla products. In 2013 he told shareholders that his money would be the last out, and that has been proven to be a flat out lie. Only time will tell how many more lies Elon will tell Twitter users, Tesla investors, and the broader public. 

This article is only meant for educational purposes, and should not be taken as investment advice. Please consider your own investment time horizon, risk tolerance, and consult with a financial advisor before acting on this information.

Full Disclosure:

At the time of this article, Shacknews primary shareholder Asif A. Khan, his family members, or his company Virtue LLC had the following positions:

Long Tesla via TSLA shares

Short Tesla via out-of-the-money TSLA put options

Long Twitter via TWTR shares


Asif Khan is the Luminary and majority shareholder of Shacknews. He began his career in video game journalism as a freelancer in 2001 for Asif is a CPA and was formerly an investment adviser representative. After much success in his own personal investments, he retired from his day job in financial services and is currently focused on new private investments. His favorite PC game of all time is Duke Nukem 3D, and he is an unapologetic fan of most things Nintendo. Asif first frequented the Shack when it was sCary's Shugashack to find all things Quake. When he is not immersed in investments or gaming he is a purveyor of fine electronic music. Asif also has an irrational love of Cleveland sports.

From The Chatty
  • reply
    April 28, 2022 10:45 PM

    Asif Khan posted a new article, Elon Musk dumps another $4 billion of Tesla (TSLA) shares

    • reply
      April 29, 2022 1:06 AM

      There is no way that Twitter is worth $44 billion, is there? I read somewhere that the terms under which Musk was able to raise the money for the buyout needs him to pay back $1 billion a year.

      If that’s true, it seems like an insane deal to me. Twitter has never been even close to that kind of profits, have they?

      Also, Musk pointing his army of troll followers at people he dislikes, isn’t that the kind of behaviour that usually gets people kicked off Twitter? Would be hilarious if he got banned, though I don’t have high hopes of it happening.

      The examples of his tweets in this story are just… Eugh. Grade A asshole.

      • reply
        April 29, 2022 1:09 AM

        Yeah i just don't get it.

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        April 29, 2022 2:56 AM

        Yeah, I've never viewed Twitter as the "public square". Its just a place to troll, doomscroll, and see some titty pics once in a while. He could do so much more with that money.

        • reply
          April 29, 2022 10:25 AM

          I think the idea that it could be a public square has some merit, but I don't think it could ever work as long as there's anonymous people on there.

      • reply
        April 29, 2022 6:15 AM

        Honestly? Maybe. I'm not looking at profits, but more at influence and data. From that angle it feels like a thing that no one yet has realized the true value of. Of course funny enough now that Elon fucking Musk is buying it that makes it vastly less valuable.

      • reply
        April 29, 2022 6:19 AM

        It's simply what the cost was of market price of all outstanding shares were at a certain point, so its clearly a speculation value on the market, not a real asset value.

      • reply
        April 29, 2022 6:48 AM

        it gets worse, he's going to have to convert stock based compensation to cash:

        Twitter's stock-based compensation for the 12 months ending Dec. 31, 2021 was $630 million, a 33% increase from 2020, corporate filings show.

      • reply
        April 29, 2022 6:51 AM

        also this. tl;dr if twitter board wouldn't have accepted the deal if they thought the company was worth $44 billion:

      • reply
        April 29, 2022 7:26 AM

        Nope. They bleed cash. Earned over $5 billion in advertising last year but still posted multi hundred million loss for the year. WTF does twitter spend over 5 billion on?

        • reply
          April 29, 2022 7:43 AM


          • reply
            April 29, 2022 8:12 AM

            It feels like you could run Twitter with maybe 200 people. Maybe their architecture is a shitshow.

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              April 29, 2022 8:13 AM

              Right below this comment I make similar comments, but to be fair in the time since we've seen Gettr and Parler and Truth Social all show up and do fuckall in so far as business or numbers are concerned. Maybe that's because Twitter has so much momentum but maybe it's because it's way harder than we think.

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                April 29, 2022 8:17 AM

                When Whatsapp was purchased for $19 billion and had only 55 employees. Now this is exceptional, but it does show that with good engineering you can operate a massive service with a small number of people. Granted Whatsapp didn't have ads, but usage was enormous and it was worldwide. Many companies get super bloated as they grow, I really wonder how whatsapp avoided it.

                • reply
                  April 29, 2022 8:20 AM

                  the engineering challenges are fairly different between whatsapp and twitter though, to be fair

                  • reply
                    April 29, 2022 8:22 AM

                    Meh, they are far closer than say whatsapp and google search.

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              April 29, 2022 8:16 AM

              They should have more than that for moderation alone. The algorithm based moderation is horrible.

              • reply
                April 29, 2022 8:19 AM

                Yes I suppose they do need a moderation team. I'm surprised their algo moderation is so bad. Let me at it I can do a better one in a week I bet. Throw some active learning supervised machine learning in there using the human moderators as labellers.

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                  April 29, 2022 8:55 AM

                  Just a few lines of code

                  • reply
                    April 29, 2022 9:02 AM

                    The coding is the easy part when it comes to machine learning. Most of the time is spent doing data and model validation and iterating on designs and parameters. But keep on lolling it up!

                    • reply
                      April 29, 2022 9:25 AM

                      "I could fix Twitter's content moderation problems in a week" is indeed lol worthy

                      • reply
                        April 29, 2022 9:27 AM

                        I mean. I just did it in Visual Basic. Ready to deploy when daddy Elon asks.

                      • reply
                        April 29, 2022 9:28 AM

                        Nothing triggers a dev like suggesting their work isn’t hard. Heaven forbid we joke about this topic. Devs are honestly the most joyless people.

                        • reply
                          April 29, 2022 9:38 AM

                          maybe someone else can figure out what part of your post was even attempting to be funny because they all read like very serious critiques

                          • reply
                            April 29, 2022 9:42 AM

                            IT'S JUST A JOOOOKEEEEE MAAAAAN!!!11!

                        • reply
                          April 29, 2022 9:51 AM

                          what kind of person jokes in a way that strokes their ego

                • reply
                  April 29, 2022 9:11 AM

                  I assume all of these companies are using active learning with human labels. I think it's just hard to say what's truly violating rules.

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                  April 29, 2022 9:47 AM

                  You are going to build a machine learning algorithm, and train it to do better than Twitter's in a week?

                  • reply
                    April 29, 2022 9:50 AM

                    I suppose the unsaid thing here is terath doesn't think much moderation should occur.

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                      April 29, 2022 9:54 AM

                      Yes let’s all make the worst assumptions about terath. Derelict up there already assumed he’s 10000x times smarter then me and I’m so stupid that I’m seriously suggesting I can write a full production system in a week. Very reasonable take.

                      You now assume I’m morally bankrupt because hey why not!

                      Anyone else? Please feel free! :D

                      • reply
                        April 29, 2022 10:17 AM

                        I don't have to assume I'm any smarter than you to think "I could improve Twitter's content moderation meaningfully in a single dev week" is ridiculous.

              • reply
                April 29, 2022 10:21 AM

                Just make it $10 bucks a month for a subscription and your trolls and shitposters vanish overnight!

                • reply
                  April 29, 2022 10:26 AM

                  The majority of your legitimate users will vanish overnight, too.

                  • reply
                    April 29, 2022 10:39 AM

                    Two birds with one stone! Save on that infrastructure cost

            • reply
              April 29, 2022 8:20 AM

              With the scale and footprint of Twitter you have tons of employees that aren't just engineers. Regulatory, moderation, legal, support, all worldwide, etc.

              Plus they get so much traffic and have apps on so many different platforms that their "architecture" isn't nearly as simple as some enterprise app with a few thousand or even tens of thousands of users.

          • reply
            April 29, 2022 8:12 AM

            ^^^ this.

            I remember years back Twitter laid off over 400 people, said to be like 11% of their workforce. Back of the napkin math says that means Twitter had almost 4,000 people on staff.

            Naturally every engineer on earth goes all "name that tune" and says how many people it should *really* take to run Twitter, and I tend to agree with the notion that, at most, maybe they need like 50 people including network engineers and shit. But I also have no idea how to run a company so what do I know.

            But one of the things people point out is Empire Building - as in, the amount of salary you can command frequently is correlated to the amount of people who work under you. The more people you manage the more you can get paid. Ipso facto, there's a perverse incentive to hire a bunch of people under you even if they don't do anything. You can always trim the fat later and it's rare for someone in a managerial position to ever get a pay cut so it's worth it to keep some useless folks around.

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              April 29, 2022 9:01 AM

              Twitter has something 7,500 employees.

              • reply
                April 29, 2022 9:23 AM

                Yea… that seems insane to me.

                • reply
                  April 29, 2022 9:43 AM

                  Running a global service that does the volume of traffic it does isn't an easy task so you need an army of network engineers, and software engineers making sure stuff works as expected. And remember even adding a few ms of latency to a service of that scale due to a bad code push, or a network stack issues can have compounding effects given their scale/volume of traffic.

                  Also you aren't taking in to account the non-engineering staff. You need to have regional offices and support staff for those for different parts of the world. You also need to have staff on hand that handles the "social media" part of the social media platform, so you need the people who design policy and do moderation. And again since it is a global service you need to have support teams in multiple languages, and even if those aren't in-house teams and are contracted out you still need people to oversee those contracts, etc.

        • reply
          April 29, 2022 8:05 AM

          To be fair they had a $766m class action settlement expense, they were profitable apart from that.

        • reply
          April 29, 2022 9:24 AM

          I don’t understand how that’s even remotely possible if it’s halfway well run.

          It’s not like they are rolling out new blockbuster products all the time. It’s been pretty stagnant. Which is honestly fine.

    • reply
      April 29, 2022 3:06 AM

      Nice read

    • reply
      April 29, 2022 6:53 AM

      he just filed that he sold an additional $4.5b worth of stock.

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