Elon Musk has attacked the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) just months after the body forced both him and Tesla to pay $20 million each following ‘misleading’ Tweets that caused havoc on the stock markets.
In an interview with the popular news feature show 60 Minutes on CBS, Musk didn’t hold back with his – perfectly legal – opinions. He said:
“I want to be clear: I do not respect the SEC.”
This comes just months after he was forced by SEC action to settle at the eight-figure penalty in the face of potentially catastrophic legal action. It will certainly rub the SEC up the wrong way, although this time there’s nothing they can do about it.
Musk also revealed, in line with what any outside observer would have expected, that almost no checks are made on his personal Tweets. Everything comes directly from Musk himself with no ‘safety net’ in place, except for Tweets about matters that could affect Tesla’s shares.
Musk remains Tesla’s largest shareholder and arguably has the most to gain – or lose – by playing God with the share price. Although the SEC forced him to remove himself as Tesla chairman, Musk is still the public face of the brand and the main puller of strings. He told 60 Minutes that he could “get anything done that I want” in a shareholder meeting.
Meanwhile, Tesla’s Autopilot is entering a new and intriguing development phase that should, claims Musk, allow cars equipped with this update to “go from your garage at home to parking at work with no driver input at all.”