In House - The FindLaw Corporate Counsel Blog

What's Next After Musk, Tesla Settle With SEC?

Facing security fraud charges, Elon Musk is stepping down as chairman but staying on as chief executive officer of Tesla.

Tesla and Musk will also pay $20 million each in a settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The agency alleged he falsely tweeted that he had financing to take the public company private.

The controversial innovator sees himself as a futurist. In a way, that was the problem.

The Fateful Tweet

Musk will continue as the face of the company, but will drop back as chairman for three years. The fateful tweet and the SEC action sent the company's stock on a roller coaster for weeks.

Tesla stock took off after Musk announced on August 7 that he was "considering taking Tesla private." He claimed funding was secured, and his personal net worth rose about $5 billion on the news.

Then the SEC weighed in, and the stock went the other way. The company lost 12 percent of its market valuation in one day.

After the SEC announced the settlement, however, the company rebounded. Its stock surged 17 percent in a day.

Next Big News

Tesla is back to pre-tweet values, give or take $20 million. In the meantime, it is set to release the next big news.

At the end of the second quarter, the company produced 5,000 Model 3 cars in a week. Investors are waiting to see if that as a blip or a sign of growth.

There's a good chance they'll find out on Twitter.

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