Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, sold roughly $5 billion in shares, according to documents filed on Wednesday, just days after polling Twitter users about selling 10% of his stock. Musk's trust sold roughly 3.6 million shares in Tesla, valued at around $4 billion, in his first stock transaction since 2016, and he also sold another 934,000 shares for $1.1 billion after exercising options to buy nearly 2.2 million shares.


According to Forbes, the 4.5 million shares represent around 3% of his total interests in the electric vehicle company, which accounts for the majority of his estimated $281.6 billion fortune. Musk surveyed Twitter followers on Saturday about selling a 10% stake in Tesla, which helped to drive down the stock's price after a majority of those polled said they agreed with the sale.

The stock dropped 13% in a multi-day selloff on Tuesday, putting the company's membership in the $1 trillion clubs in jeopardy, but it rebounded 4.3 percent on Wednesday.

Elon Musk

Why has Elon Musk accumulated so much wealth

In a Tweet later, Musk cited the main reason behind accumulating capital. Sawyer Merritt who is the co-founder of Twin Birch, an American lifestyle clothing company wrote, "Lastly, it's important to note that Elon's wealth really is on paper. It only becomes cash when he sells. Long term, it's Elon's goal to extend the light of consciousness beyond Earth and make life multi-planetary. He will (partly) use his Tesla stock to pay for that." To which Musk responded, "There are many other good causes, but this is my main reason for accumulating capital. The resources I consume personally are very low."


It is pertinent to note that Musk's Twitter poll asking about selling 10% of his Tesla stock came after some Congressional Democrats pushed for rich like him to shed taxes on stock gains even if they don't sell any. Known as "unrealized gains," and Musk, who has a net worth of around $300 billion, has a lot of them.