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Musk Has No Respect For SEC, Says Tweets Aren't Being Reviewed

Musk Has No Respect For SEC, Says Tweets Aren't Being Reviewed

Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) CEO Elon Musk is honoring his settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission pertaining to charges of market manipulation.

But he’s not happy about it.

“I want to be clear: I do not respect the SEC,” Musk said on SUnday's “60 Minutes.” episode. “I do not respect them.”

In fact, he’s only complied with paying the $20 million fine and relinquishing his seat as chairman “because I respect the justice system.”

Resistance To Watchdogs

Not only does Musk resent the SEC’s ruling but he also rejects any suspicion that Tesla’s taking internal measures to mitigate the threat of his impulsiveness. By his account, his tweets are neither censored nor supervised, and the board’s new chair — a successor Musk, himself, handpicked — isn't responsible to monitor the CEO’s activity.

Such a review system would be inefficient and futile.

“It’s not realistic in the sense that I am the largest shareholder in the company, and I could just call for a shareholder vote and get anything done that I want,” Musk said.

Rights Over Public Relations

So for now, Tesla lets its leader run loose. Musk’s mouthpiece — his closely scrutinized Twitter Inc (NYSE: TWTR) account — is his own, and his stock-moving behavior remains unchecked.

“The only tweets that would have to be reviewed is if a tweet had a probability of causing a movement in the stock,” he said. “Otherwise it’s, hello, First Amendment. Freedom of speech is fundamental.”

And in the process of honoring Musk’s rights, Tesla “might make some mistakes, who knows? Nobody’s perfect.”

Musk also discussed General Motors (NYSE: GM) and his marijuana use, among other topics.

Tesla's stock traded up marginally Monday morning, with shares sitting around $358.75 at time of publication.

Related Links:

Tesla Changes Up Its General Counsel After Tough Year In Legal

Jefferies Upgrades Tesla To Buy On Capacity To Self-Fund, Potential To Split With Musk

Photo credit: Public domain.


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