Musk’s wealth nosedives $12.6 bn

Tesla’s operating income decreased 24 per cent to $2.7 billion in Q1 2023 as the Elon Musk-run EV maker continues to cut prices of its vehicles….reports Asian Lite News

Elon Musk saw his wealth plummet by more than $12 billion in just a day as he faced chaos and disappointing news from across his companies — SpaceX, Twitter and Tesla.

According to Bloomberg’s Billionaires Index, this was the biggest drop in Musk’s wealth so far this year.

Tesla’s share price fell by 9.8 per cent after disappointing first quarter results.

Tesla’s operating income decreased 24 per cent to $2.7 billion in Q1 2023 as the Elon Musk-run EV maker continues to cut prices of its vehicles.

On the same day, SpaceX’s integrated Starship spacecraft experienced a “rapid unscheduled disassembly” four minutes into its first test flight.

SpaceX’s giant Starship rocket exploded after its launch from the US state of Texas on Thursday.

The rocket got off the launch pad in SpaceX’s Starbase in South Texas but exploded minutes later. The spacecraft failed to reach orbit.

Twitter also went into chaos after Musk removed legacy Blue check marks, leaving hundreds of celebrities in the doldrum.

Musk still remains the world’s second-richest person despite this latest tumble in net worth, behind French tycoon Bernard Arnault, reports The Verge.

Musk’s fortune once sat as high as $320 billion in late 2021. Later, he became the first person in history to lose over $200 billion.

In some relief for Tesla CEO Elon Musk, jurors in an Autopilot-related 2019 crash in the US have given the verdict in favour of the electric car company.

The jury in the California state court awarded plaintiff Justine Hsu, who sued Tesla in 2020, no damages, reports The Verge.

The jurors found that the Tesla Autopilot software “wasn’t at fault in a crash where the car turned into a median on a city street while Autopilot was engaged”.

Tesla is under intense scrutiny for its Autopilot and its Full Self-Driving (FSD) driver assistance features.

In February, Tesla received a clean chit from the US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) in a fatal crash involving a Tesla Model S Autopilot system in 2021.

The US transportation agency determined that the “probable cause of the Spring, Texas, electric vehicle crash was the driver’s excessive speed and failure to control his car”.

As for Autopilot, the NTSB determined it wasn’t in use because the system is not programmed to not go faster than 30 mph on the street the Tesla last travelled.

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is also investigating self-driving claims made by Musk.

The SEC probe is to determine if the electric car-maker flouted its rules in promoting its full-self driving (FSD) and Autopilot software.

In February, Tesla paused the rollout of its Full Self-Driving beta software in the US and Canada following a recall of the system.

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