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April 30, 2019

Musk and SEC reach new deal on tweets

A regulatory dispute in the US between the Securities and Exchange Commission and Tesla over CEO Elon Musk's postings on Twitter has been resolved.

By Sam Duke

A regulatory dispute in the US between the Securities and Exchange Commission and Tesla over CEO Elon Musk's postings on Twitter has been resolved.

According to a filing in federal court the SEC and Musk have agreed that a company lawyer must pre-approve Musk's tweets related to a number of topic areas, including Tesla's financial position, potential mergers and acquisitions, and sales numbers.

The SEC and Musk agreed to amend an earlier settlement to add specific topics he can't tweet about or otherwise communicate in writing without advance approval from a Tesla lawyer. Musk, who has been CEO of Tesla since 2008, has over 24 million followers on Twitter.

Last year Musk caused the SEC to investigate Musk's Twitter posting after he posted that he'd secured funding to take the company private, sending Tesla's share price on a surge. That led to back-pedalling by other company representatives and the Tesla board eventually said it was happy with the current company structure and public listing. The SEC sued, saying Musk had misled investors. After a settlement, a new CEO appointment eventually followed, on the SEC's advice.

The latest dispute followed a February Twitter posting that risked Musk being held in contempt of court. The settlement suggests that no further SEC sanctions or fines will be forthcoming for Musk.

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