Prophetic investor from 'The Big Short' is betting against Tesla
Published Tuesday, May 18, 2021 12:17PM EDT
Michael Burry, one of the investors who became famous for predicting the epic collapse in the housing market in 2008 that was chronicled in the book and movie "The Big Short," has a new favourite stock to bet against: Tesla.
Burry's firm, Scion Asset Management, revealed in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing Monday that it held bearish put options on more than 800,000 Tesla shares, worth about US$534 million, as of the end of the first quarter.
Put options give investors the right to sell a stock at a specified price and are a sign that an investor thinks the stock will go down.
No reason was given in the filing for why Burry thinks Tesla's stock is due for a fall.
But shares of Tesla have taken a hit recently, plunging nearly 25% in the past month — in part because of concerns about CEO Elon Musk focusing more on bitcoin, dogecoin and other cryptocurrencies instead of the company's core electric vehicle market.
Musk was also recently the guest host of "Saturday Night Live." And in his spare time, he runs SpaceX as well. Needless to say, Musk is a bit stretched, which worries some investors.
Burry bet against the housing bubble in the mid-2000s and profited from the eventual demise of the subprime lending market and many big financial firms in 2008. His prescient forecasts were detailed in the Michael Lewis book and subsequent movie, in which Burry was played by Oscar winner Christian Bale.
But Burry is not just looking to profit from stocks that he thinks are ripe for a fall. According to the SEC filing, Scion also holds call options, which give an investor the right to buy a stock at a certain price, on Google owner Alphabet, CVS and Facebook.