According to Tesla filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC, Tesla plans to start accepting bitcoin as payment in a limited manner saying it will allow the company “more flexibility to further diversify and maximize returns on our cash.” The company did disclose that due to various laws, accepting bitcoin will be in a limited basis. At the start of 2021, Tesla had $19 billion in cash and cash equivalents on hand.
Tesla’s purchase of bitcoin has apparently been happening for several weeks, which explains, in part, why bitcoin has rose in value so much. Tesla CEO Elon Musk said on the social media site Clubhouse that “I do at this point think bitcoin is a good thing, and I am a supporter of bitcoin.” News of Musk’s comments and Tesla’s bitcoin purchase sent the cryptocurrency up to $44,200.
As of Monday morning, bitcoin began sliding backwards slightly as details of Tesla’s plan to accept bitcoin come out showing very few people will be able to actually use bitcoin to buy their Tesla using the cryptocurrency. Regulators are looking at Musk’s activity to see if his actions and statements were planned in a manner the promoted the rise in value of bitcoin for Musk’s benefit. Musk has previously been fined $20 million for making public statements specifically about stocks, investments and finances in order to get the public to react a certain way which he then used to his advantage to profit.