A jury decided Friday that Elon Musk was not liable for losses suffered by investors after he posted messages on Twitter that he had secured the funding to take Tesla private in 2018.
Investors had sued Mr. Musk, Tesla and the company’s board, arguing that Mr. Musk’s statements about his embryonic plan to take the electric car company private had devastating financial consequences for them. But in a federal civil trial over the last three weeks, lawyers for Tesla and Mr. Musk, the car company’s chief executive, have argued that he was such a successful businessman that he could have easily obtained financing to take Tesla private.
Two posts on Twitter by Mr. Musk are at the heart of the case. On Aug. 7, 2018, he wrote on Twitter: “Am considering taking Tesla private at $420. Funding secured.” He then wrote: “Investor support is confirmed. Only reason why this is not certain is that it’s contingent on a shareholder vote.” Tesla’s share price jumped after those posts and then tumbled after the proposal fell apart in less than three weeks.
The judge in the case, Edward M. Chen, had already ruled that “funding secured” and Mr. Musk’s second statement were untrue, and that Mr. Musk was reckless when posting them.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.