Elon Musk holds Twitter vote over $21bn Tesla share sale

Elon Musk holds Twitter vote over $21bn Tesla share sale
Elon Musk is critical of a "billionaires tax" being proposed by some Democrats. Source: Reuters
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Daily US Times: Elon Musk has launched a Twitter poll of his 62.6 million followers asking if he should sell 10% of his shares in Tesla.

The vote, which closes later on Sunday, could see the Tesla billionaire dispose of $21bn (£16bn) of stock in the electric carmaker.

Mr Musk promised to abide by the result of the poll, a response to a “billionaires tax” proposed by US Democrats.

The plan could see Mr Musk face a huge tax bill. Mr Musk is one of the world’s richest men.

With about 8 hours to go before the poll closes, 57% of the 2.8 million respondents had voted “yes”.

Elon Musk owns more than $200bn worth of shares and is due to exercise options next year that will boost his worth even further, but leave the billionaire entrepreneur with what he said would be a “massive” tax bill.

According to the plans proposed by the Democratic Party in the Senate, billionaires could be taxed on “unrealised gains” when the price of their shares goes up – even if they do not sell any of their stock.

Mr Musk said in another tweet on Saturday: “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.”

He tweeted: “Much is made lately of unrealized gains being a means of tax avoidance, so I propose selling 10% of my Tesla stock.”

The proposed tax on capital gains, whether or not assets have been sold, could hit about 700 billionaires in the United States.

Critics have pointed out that the value of assets do not always go up.

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