,The second richest man in the world has an uncanny ability to send stocks rising or plummeting with a single Twitter post or comment. From sending messenger app Signal's popularity soaring to sending Bitcoin plummeting with a mere observation that it did "seem high," Elon Musk has done it all. But a recent post has not gone down well with many online, having affected his own company adversely. Needless to say, many Tesla investors are not happy with Elon Musk right now.
But the Tesla chief does not seem to be overly perturbed. In response to a lengthy diatribe against him for the drop in Tesla stock prices, and stating that his actions were not a shining example for others to follow, Musk sent back a single emoji.
"Two weeks after Elon Musk announced that he spent $1.5 billion of shareholder money buying Bitcoin, Tesla stock entered a bear market, plunging 20% from its all-time high set on Jan. 25th, and 16% since disclosing the Bitcoin buy. Not an example other CEOs will likely follow!" read an irate message from a Twitter user named Peter Schiff whose bio identifies him as the Chief Market Strategist and Senior Economist of Euro Pacific Capital.
And Musk, rather eloquently responded with an eggplant emoji. Now, as the more social media savvy among us may know, this particular vegetable is frequently used as a phallic approximation. And while we do not know what exactly Musk was trying to say, Schiff was not amused.
To give a bit of context, earlier in February, Tesla had revealed in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it had bought $1.5 billion worth of Bitcoin. The company said the decision had been taken to provide additional flexibility to "diversify and maximize returns on our cash."
The company also indicated that it would accept the digital currency as payment for Tesla products. The revelations had boosted both Bitcoin and Tesla shares significantly.
Around the same time, Musk said during an interaction that he was a "supporter of Bitcoin," opining that it was a "good thing."
Cryptocurrencies have long found favour with Musk. His tweets about Dogecoin had sent the meme-inspired currency soaring, and his seeming love for Bitcoin has found many takers. It was not a massive effort on part of the Tesla chief. As we saw earlier this month, a single hashtag added to his Twitter bio stating '#bitcoin' was more than enough to send Bitcoin into a two-week high.
But now, Musk appears to have affected his own company with his views on Bitcoin and his market-moving Twitter posts. Interestingly, this too is an extension of another earlier conversation with Schiff.
Tesla shares have since dropped more than 9%. And Musk has once again found himself ranked second on the wealthiest people list, having lost more than $15 billion in one day.