Musk says tweet that led to $20m fine 'worth it'

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Tesla CEO Elon Musk.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the tweet that cost him and the company $20 million each in fines by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) was "worth it".

This is according to a tweet, sent late on Friday evening less than an hour before Musk tweeted he would take a break from Twitter "for a few days", and was in response to a question from a Twitter follower.

The SEC in September charged Musk, 47, with misleading investors with tweets on 7 August that said he was considering taking Tesla private at $420 a share and had secured funding.

The tweets had no basis in fact, and the ensuing market chaos hurt investors, regulators claimed.

Tesla and Musk have agreed to pay $20 million each to financial regulators and the billionaire will step down as the company's chairman but remain as chief executive, under a settlement.

Under the settlement agreement, Tesla needs to appoint an independent chairman by 13 November.

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