Tesla announces share sell off

A day after its 5-for-1 stock split took effect, Tesla has announced plans to sell up to $US5 billion ($A6.8 billion) worth of common shares.

The electric car and solar panel maker said in a filing with securities regulators on Tuesday it intends selling up to 10.03 million shares and using the proceeds for unspecified corporate purposes.

The sales would be made “from time to time” and Tesla says the actual amount of the offering can’t presently be determined.

The stock would be sold through 10 different brokerage houses and each would get a 0.5 per cent commission.

Tesla shares closed Tuesday down 4.7 per cent to $475.05.

The filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission came before the markets opened. Any stock sales would likely dilute the value of current shareholders’ investments.

As of June 30, Tesla had $US8.6 billion in cash and roughly $US8.5 billion in debt excluding vehicle and solar panel financing.

The company has to finance some big-ticket capital spending this year because it’s building a new factory in Germany and has plans for an additional plant outside of Austin, Texas.

It’s also gearing up to roll out its new “Cybertruck” pickup and a semi sometime next year.

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