It appears that Elon Musk faces yet another obstacle in his proposed acquisition of Twitter (NYSE: TWTR), this time in the form of a lawsuit filed by the social media company’s investors, who allege the Tesla CEO manipulated the stock price lower in order to save millions of dollars.
According to Reuters, a group of investors are accusing Musk of failing to disclose his 5% stake in Twitter within 10 days, which ultimately helped him avoid paying an additional $156 million. The investors requested to be appointed a class title, and receive an unknown amount of compensation for the damages. Twitter itself was also named a defendant in the suit, after investors argued that the social media giant did not adequately investigate Musk’s misconduct.
As per the lawsuit, Musk’s main goal was to “drive Twitter’s stock down substantially in order to create leverage,” which ultimately deemed successful. “Musk’s market manipulation worked. Twitter has lost $8 billion in valuation since the buyout was announced,” continued the suit, which was reiterated by Bloomberg Law. The plaintiffs accuse Musk of committing market manipulation by purchasing Twitter stock “at an artificially low price,” by failing to disclose his stake in a timely manner.
The suit also added that Musk’s accusations of Twitter being overrun by spam accounts and his subsequent decision to put the purchase temporarily on hold was also an attempt to push the company’s stock price even lower. The Tesla CEO’s untimely disclosures of his Twitter also caught the attention of the SEC, which launched an inquiry into the matter. As per securities law, an investor is required to alert regulators within 10 days if they purchase a stake in a company in excess of 5%.
Information for this briefing was found via Reuters and Bloomberg Law. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.