A Volkswagen director has made over EUR1m selling company shares.

Production director Jochem Heizmann sold 2,000 VW shares on 31 October at EUR537.93 each, a statement said.

The share price had leapt to more than EUR1,000 in explosive intra-day trading on 28 October as investment funds dived in after previously betting against the stock, Agence France Press (AFP) reported.

The surge came after Porsche announced it controlled directly or indirectly almost three quarters of VW’s equity, forcing the funds to buy back shares at almost any price to limit losses sustained through the practice of short selling.

Having borrowed VW shares and sold them in anticipation they would fall in value and become available again at a lower price, the funds had to scramble to cover their positions.

With the German state of Lower Saxony owning 20.1% of VW shares, less than 6% were available on the market, and they sold to the highest bidder.

VW was even briefly the biggest company in the world in terms of market capitalisation, ahead of ExxonMobil.