Mar 19, 2019

SEC: Elon Musk is in "blatant violation" of settlement agreement

Photo: JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images

Elon Musk was in "blatant violation" of a settlement agreement and his defense against being held in contempt "borders on the ridiculous," the Securities and Exchange Commission said in a court filing Monday.

Details: The SEC alleges Musk violated the terms after tweeting on February 19 that Tesla would build 500,000 cars in 2019. He quickly clarified in another tweet the company would build at an annual rate of 500,000 cars by the year's end but it would only build 400,000 cars in 2019. His attorney told a federal last week Musk's tweet was "immaterial." Lawyers for the SEC found it "stunning to learn" Musk had not sought pre-approval for his tweets about Tesla in the months since the court-ordered pre-approval policy went into effect.

Go deeper: Pro Rata Podcast: Elon Musk's surprise settlement

What they're saying: “Musk’s contention — that the potential size of a car company’s production for the year could not reasonably be material — borders on the ridiculous,” lawyers for SEC wrote. “His interpretation is inconsistent with the plain terms of this court’s order and renders its pre-approval requirement meaningless."

What's next: U.S. District Judge Alison Nathan, sitting in Manhattan, will decide if Musk should be held in contempt of court and whether he should be punished.

Go deeper

Biden says he'll follow CDC mask guidance: "Listen to the Faucis of the world"

Joe Biden said on ABC's "This Week" Sunday that he will follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's new recommendation that people wear face coverings when they leave home to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Why it matters: After the White House announced the guideline last week, President Trump said he will likely not wear a mask and emphasized that the guidance was "voluntary."

Louisiana governor says state will run out of ventilators on April 9

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said on CNN's "State of the Union" Sunday that modeling projects his state will run out of ventilators for coronavirus patients on April 9 and hospital beds on April 11.

Why it matters: New York is the only state in the country with a worse per-capita death rate than Louisiana, where around 12,500 people have been infected and 409 have been killed.

Go deeperArrow42 mins ago - Health

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 a.m. ET: 1,216,422 — Total deaths: 65,711 — Total recoveries: 252,478Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 a.m. ET: 312,245 — Total deaths: 8,503 — Total recoveries: 15,021Map.
  3. Public health latest: CDC launches national trackers and recommends face coverings in public. Federal government will cover costs of COVID-19 treatment for uninsured. The virus is hitting poor, minority communities harder and upending childbirth.
  4. 2020 latest: "We have no contingency plan," Trump said on the 2020 Republican National Convention. "We're having the convention at the end of August."
  5. Business updates: Restaurants step up for health care workers. Employees are pressuring companies to provide protections during coronavirus.
  6. Oil latest: Monday meeting among oil-producing countries to discuss supply curbs is reportedly being delayed amid tensions between Saudi Arabia and Russia.
  7. Education update: Many college-age students won't get coronavirus relief checks.
  8. What should I do? Pets, moving and personal health. Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  9. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

Subscribe to Mike Allen's Axios AM to follow our coronavirus coverage each morning from your inbox.