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Price of Tesla Stock Drops 9 Percent as Elon Musk Faces $13 Billion Tax Bill

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Elon Musk

Elon Musk, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Tesla, is presently owing more than $13 billion in both state and federal taxes according to numerous reports from the United States.

The billionaire had asked his over 62 million Twitter followers over the weekend whether he should sell 10 percent of his Tesla holdings. “Much is made lately of unrealized gains being a means of tax avoidance, so I propose selling 10% of my Tesla stock,” Musk tweeted.

As reported by Investors King, the results were 58 percent in support of selling while 42 percent voted against the billionaire’s decision. However, a new report has noted that regardless of the outcome of the poll, Musk would still have to sell given the size of his debt.

In 2012, the billionaire was awarded options as part of a compensation plan because he doesn’t collect salary or cash bonus, therefore his wealth comes from stocks award and the gains in Tesla’s share price. Musk was awarded 22.8 million shares at $6.24 per share in 2012. Tesla stock was hovering around $1,050 a unit at the time of writing, meaning Musk’s gain on the shares is about N23.797 Billion.

But because the billionaire has to pay income tax on the gain since the options are taxed as an employee benefit or compensation. They will be taxed at top ordinary-income levels, or 37 percent plus the 3.8 percent net investment tax. Also, he will have to pay the 13.3 percent top tax rate in California since the options were granted while he was a resident in California.

In total, the billionaire would be paying 54.1 percent in state and federal tax. Meaning, the total tax bill on Musk’s options at the present price would be around $12.874 billion.

While Musk didn’t confirm the size of his tax bill in his tweets, he suggested he can only pay his taxes by selling some of his holdings. “Note, I do not take a cash salary or bonus from anywhere. I only have stock, thus the only way for me to pay taxes personally is to sell stock.”

Tesla stock closed at $1222 on Friday but started plunging on Monday after Musk’s tweet as some investors and analysts were interpreting the billionaire’s decision to sell as cashout.

Wall Street Journal on Tuesday said “Did Elon Musk outsource the decision of whether to sell his Tesla stock to his Twitter followers because he’s a wacky billionaire who is angry about Democratic tax plans? Or is it because he knows more about Tesla’s true value than anyone else, and thinks now’s the time to get out?

“Either way, it’s a good time to sell as the three trends that helped Tesla shares soar are fickle and might reverse at any time.”

Michael Burry, a big short investor who has criticised Elon Musk and described Tesla stock as overpriced, said regardless of what the billionaire claimed was the reason for selling the 10 percent, he has to pay back personal loans he used 88.9 million of his shares as security for on June 30, 2021.

“Regarding what @elonmusk NEEDS to sell because of the proposed unrealized gains tax, or to #solveworldhunger, or … well, there is the matter of the tax-free cash he took out in the form of personal loans backed by 88.3 million of his shares at June 30th,” the investor tweeted.

Burry then went on to share a link to Securities and Exchange Commission filing in August that said Musk had pledged about 88 million shares, or 36 percent of his total stake, as collateral for personal loans as of June 30.

The uncertainty surrounding the real reason for the sale is forcing several retail investors to start taking profit as they await more clarity. Still, the billionaire Tesla holdings outside his options or compensation worth over $200 billion.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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Elon Musk Sells More Shares Worth $1 Billion

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Tesla earnings

Tesla Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Elon Musk sold another 934,091 shares valued at $1.05 billion. This came after the decision to exercise options to buy 2.15 million shares.

Musk, who is the world’s richest man, tweeted on November 6 that he would sell 10 percent of his Tesla stock if the majority of those following him on Twitter approved.

About 58% of the 3.5 million followers approved of the plan, and the South African born billionaire started to follow through. In this month alone, he has dumped a total of $9.85 billion inside Tesla stock, including the $6.9 billion he sold around the week of November 10, and the $1.9 billion he sold around November 15 and November 16.

This sale of just over 934,000 shares was announced at a stock filing on Tuesday night. Some of the shares were however sold partly to fulfill tax obligations which are related to an exercise of stock options.

According to a CNBC report, Elon Musk and his trust still hold well above 169 million shares in the electric vehicle maker.

In the week that followed the famous Elon Musk Twitter poll, Tesla shares fell by over 15%. On Wednesday, Tesla shares went up about 1%.

That week, a new electric car rival for Tesla, Rivian Automotive made its debut on the stock market and had its cap market value flying to $100 billion just on the first day of trading.

The Wall Street Journal calculates that Elon Musk’s financial movements have reduced his prospective tax bill by around $480 million. These financial movements back the world’s richest man’s public arguments with American lawmakers concerning tax policy.

Musk only recently announced that Tesla’s headquarters has been moved from Silicon Valley in California to Austin Texas. The billionaire has also almost cut all existing ties with California, as he put the last remaining mansion of his on the market last month.

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Jeff Bezoz Donates $100 Million to Obama Foundation

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Jeff Bezos - Investors King

Former President of the United States, Barack Obama’s foundation announced on Monday that it had received a donation to the tune of $100 million from Amazon founder Jeff Bezos. The foundation also mentioned that the contribution was the largest it had ever received from an individual.

The Obama Foundation released a statement, where it said that the donation received from Bezos will be used to assist in the expansion of the scope of programming which reaches leaders that will emerge in the United States as well as other countries around the world.

As reported by the Chicago Tribune, the donation was also said to be given in honour of John Lewis, the congressman and popular civil rights luminary who died last year. The foundation also stated that the donation from Bezos involved a request that the plaza at the Obama Presidential Centre which is under construction on the South Side of Chicago to be named after the late Lewis.

Valerie Jarrett, who is a former adviser to Obama and currently serves as the CEO of the foundation stated that the foundation was delighted with the idea of naming the plaza after Lewis.

Construction on the project – which is seen as Obama’s legacy project – is to be completed by 2025, and is estimated to cost about $830 million. The foundation has said that it’s currently giving any donors the chance to honour the names of those who have fought for a just, equitable world by naming public spaces in the under-construction presidential centre.

In the statement released by the foundation, Bezos said that freedom fighters are deserving of a special space in the “pantheon” of heroes, and John Lewis – whom he regarded as a great American man with an exceptional sense of decency and courage – was highly deserving of the gift.

Bezos also showed his support for the Obamas and their foundation, which aims to train and inspire leaders of tomorrow.

After he stepped down as the CEO of Amazon earlier this year, Bezos started to turn his attention towards Philanthropy. NYU Langone Health, a medical centre that has affiliations with New York University also announced on Monday that it had received a $166 million donation from Jeff Bezos and his family.

The centre said in a statement that the donation will be used to aid the health and “wellness” of diverse populations across the NYU Langone Hospital.

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Aliko Dangote Net Worth Surged $1.1B In A Day

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Aliko Dangote - Investors King

Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote added $1.1 billion to his net worth on the 9th of November 2021, pushing his current net worth to $20.2 billion. Data from the Bloomberg billionaire index revealed that Dangote’s net worth year-to-date has surged by $2.43 billion or 13.6 percent.

He’s currently ranked 96th on Bloomberg’s billionaire index.

Dangote is the major shareholder of Dangote cement, the biggest cement producing company in sub-Saharan Africa. It was reported that Dangote’s wealth is derived from his 86 percent equity stake in Dangote Cement.

A breakdown of his net worth revealed that he has $3.5 billion in cash. His cash holding is based on an analysis of dividends, taxes, insider transactions and other expenditures.

Dangote’s other publicly traded assets include stakes of $9.90 billion in Dangote Cement, $362 million in Dangote Sugar, $59.8 in NASCON Nigeria, and $297 thousand in United Bank For Africa.

His private assets span across $100 million in Free zone Land, $200 million in Lagos Real Estate, $575 million on OML 71 and 72, $5.15 billion on fertilizer plant, 302 million in Dangote industries companies and $45 Million in Private plane.

Aliko Dangote’s Biography

The richest man in Africa was born on the 4th of October, 1957 in Kano State, Nigeria. In 1977 he obtained a higher degree education at Al-Azhar University in Cairo where he studied business administration. He further bagged two doctorate degrees from Coventry University and the University of Ibadan.

Following his graduation from Al-Azhar University in Cairo, Dangote obtained a loan from his uncle to start his cement trading business. In 1981 he formed Dangote cement trading company which is now known as Dangote group.

He later diversified his operations to include trading sugar, flour, fish, rice, milk and iron. In 1999, Dangote shifted the company’s focus from trading to manufacturing, believing that it will be more profitable to create a local operation that would meet the consumer needs of Nigeria’s ever-growing population.

Dangote began building salt and sugar refineries, flour mills and a pasta factory in 1999, he expand his operations by buying Benue Cement Co. from the federal government of Nigeria. In 2003, he commissioned the largest cement facility in sub-Saharan Africa, Obajana Cement Plant located in Kogi state.

In 2010, Dangote Cement was listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange now Nigeria Exchange Group (NXG)

Today, Dangote Group’s main publicly traded businesses are Dangote Cement, Dangote Sugar, and Nascon Allied Industries, which make up about one-third of the market capitalization of the Nigerian Exchange Group.

The oil refinery currently under construction in Nigeria valued at $19 billion isn’t included in the valuation because operations are yet to commence.

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