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By Katrina Nicholas
(Bloomberg) — Tesla Inc.’s Elon Musk tweeted that he’s decided to sell his last remaining house a week after a report said he and others billionaires paid little or no income taxes for several years.
The electric-car maker’s chief executive officer tweeted earlier this month that he only has one house in the San Francisco Bay area that is rented out for events, and that if he sold, it “would see less use, unless bought by a big family, which might happen some day.”
Musk, 49, first announced plans more than a year ago to sell his homes and most of his possessions as a way to blunt criticism of his wealth. Within days, he put two of his California properties on the market.
Last week, ProPublica reported that Musk, Amazon.com Inc. CEO Jeff Bezos and Berkshire Hathaway Inc. Chairman Warren Buffett have paid little income tax relative to their outsize wealth, citing a trove of Internal Revenue Service data on tax returns for thousands of the wealthiest Americans. Musk paid no federal income taxes in 2018 and less than US$70,000 in 2015 and 2017, according to the report.
An IRS official said last week that the disclosure of the data for billionaires including Bloomberg LP founder Michael Bloomberg, the founder and majority owner of Bloomberg LP, the parent company of Bloomberg News, has been referred to Federal Bureau of Investigation investigators.
After the ProPublica report, Musk tweeted that he will keep paying income taxes in California in proportion with his time in the state, which he said will be significant. He moved to Texas last year and said he now rents a roughly US$50,000 house in Boca Chica from Space Exploration Technologies Corp., which has a launch site in the area.
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