Elon Musk is getting a laugh out of a 503-day-old marijuana joke that securities regulators didn’t find so funny.
Tesla climbed above US$420 for the first time Monday as fresh financing arranged from banks in China added to optimism supporting a months-long rally. Musk, who was sued by the US Securities and Exchange Commission last year for falsely tweeting he had funding to take the company private at that price, cracked a joke about the development on his favourite social media platform.
“Whoa … the stock is so high lol,” Musk tweeted.
Tesla advanced as much as 4% to $422.01, rising a fourth consecutive day. The electric car maker is said to have lined up more than $1.4-billion in financing from local banks for its Shanghai factory as it prepares to begin deliveries of China-made Model 3 sedans in the country. An announcement will probably be made as soon as this week, according to a person familiar with the matter.
The SEC said in September 2018 that Musk picked $420 as the price at which Tesla would go private to make a weed joke that would impress his girlfriend. In cannabis culture, 20 April, or 4/20, is celebrated as a day for smoking marijuana.
Musk and Tesla each agreed to pay $20-million in penalties as part of a settlement that barred him from serving as chairman for three years. The company also added new independent directors to its board and was required to hire or designate a securities lawyer to pre-approve certain social media posts by its billionaire co-founder.
Tesla shares have now surged about 66% since reporting a surprise profit on 23 October. In addition to starting sales of locally built Model 3s in China soon, the company has accelerated the introduction of its newest model, the Model Y crossover, to the northern hemisphere summer of next year, rather than the autumn. — Reported by Catherine Larkin and Dana Hull, (c) 2019 Bloomberg LP