Tesla CEO Elon Musk, the world’s wealthiest man, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, with a net worth of $243 billion, said last week that he will “pay more taxes this year than any other American in history.”
Musk’s estimates come amid concerns over how much he will pay in taxes as a result of his battle with Elizabeth Warren over the amount he pays in taxes.Musk stated that he will “pay more taxes this year than any American in history” in response to Elizabeth Warren’s tweet accusing him of “freeloading off everyone else.”
Let’s change the rigged tax code so The Person of the Year will actually pay taxes and stop freeloading off everyone else. https://t.co/jqQxL9Run6Please help us out :— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) December 13, 2021
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Musk has exercised a large number of Tesla share options this year and must pay tax on the difference between the exercise price and fair market value of the shares — which are up about 30% year-to-date. He has in turn sold large chunks of Tesla shares to meet the tax obligation.
The billionaire’s massive tax bill this year comes after years of legally paying very little compared to his wealth. A ProPublica investigation published in June found that he paid $455 million in taxes in total from 2014 to 2018 even though his wealth grew by $13.9 billion. He also paid no federal income taxes in 2018.
Musk is currently the world’s richest man with a net worth of $243 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
Musk has exercised a significant number of Tesla stock options this year and is required to pay tax on the difference between the exercise price and the shares’ fair market value — which is around 30% higher year to date. He has since sold substantial amounts of Tesla stock to satisfy the tax liability. The calculation is based on his Tesla stock, which is over a billion dollars in value, and likely what he owes the state of California in state taxes.
This year’s enormous tax bill comes after years of lawfully paying a little in comparison to his wealth. According to a June ProPublica investigation, he paid $455 million in taxes between 2014 and 2018, despite the fact that his wealth increased by $13.9 billion. Additionally, he did not pay any federal income taxes in 2018.