Elon Musk says Twitter deal is "temporarily on hold"

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Elon Musk said Friday that his planned $44 cardinal acquisition of Twitter is "temporarily connected hold" pending details connected spam and fake accounts connected the societal media platform, different twist amid signs of interior turmoil implicit the projected acquisition.

In a tweet, the Tesla billionaire linked to a Reuters communicative from May 2 citing a fiscal filing from Twitter that estimated mendacious oregon spam accounts made up less than 5% of the company's "monetizable regular progressive users" successful the archetypal quarter.

"Twitter woody temporarily connected clasp pending details supporting calculation that spam/fake accounts bash so correspond little than 5% of users," Musk said, indicating he's skeptical that the fig of inauthentic accounts is that low.

Twitter woody temporarily connected clasp pending details supporting calculation that spam/fake accounts bash so correspond little than 5% of usershttps://t.co/Y2t0QMuuyn

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 13, 2022

A abbreviated clip aboriginal connected Friday morning, Musk tweeted that helium remains committed to the purchase. 

Still committed to acquisition

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 13, 2022

It wasn't wide whether the contented could scuttle the deal. Shares of some Twitter and Tesla swung sharply successful other directions, with Twitter's banal tumbling 17% to $37.20 earlier trading opened successful the U.S, and Tesla, which Musk had projected utilizing to assistance money the Twitter deal, jumping 5%. Twitter's banal terms is present good beneath the $54.20 per stock that Musk agreed to wage for the company. 

Twitter CEO Parag Agarwal tweeted Friday day that "While I expect the woody to close, we request to beryllium prepared for each scenarios and ever bash what's close for Twitter."

"Circus show"

Calling Musk's tweet "bizarre," Wedbush Securities expert Dan Ives said, "The implications of this tweet volition nonstop this Twitter circus amusement into a Friday the 13th fearfulness amusement arsenic present the Street volition presumption this woody arsenic 1) apt falling apart, 2) Musk negotiating for a little woody price, oregon 3) Musk simply walking distant from the woody with a $1 cardinal breakup fee."  

Twitter disclosed its findings connected bot and spam accounts successful a filing for its first-quarter results. The institution said, "We person performed an interior reappraisal of a illustration of accounts and estimation that the mean of mendacious oregon spam accounts during the archetypal 4th of 2022 represented less than 5% of our [monetizable regular progressive users] during the quarter."

Twitter added that it was imaginable that "the existent fig of mendacious oregon spam accounts could beryllium higher than we person estimated."

Academic researchers successful 2017 attempted a census of each of Twitter's progressive English-language accounts and estimated that up to 15% were bots of immoderate kind. Emilio Ferrara, a prof astatine the University of Southern California who helped pb the research, said Friday that Twitter has gotten amended astatine detecting and perpetually deleting spam accounts – but they are added to the level each the time.

"It's truly hard to pinpoint the fig overall," helium said. "It's not imaginable — unless you are Twitter — to marque a broad estimation of the userbase."

Here's what it would mean for Twitter to spell private 00:52

Investors person had to measurement ineligible troubles for Musk, arsenic good arsenic the anticipation that acquiring Twitter could beryllium a distraction from moving the world's astir invaluable automaker. Musk has besides drawn scrutiny for his inclination to disclose alleged "material information" — accusation that tin interaction a publically traded company's banal terms — via Twitter, alternatively than done a regulatory filing. 

"The quality of Musk creating truthful overmuch uncertainty successful a tweet (and not a filing) is precise troubling to us," Ives said successful his enactment to investors.

Musk has already sold disconnected much than $8 cardinal worthy of his Tesla shares to assistance concern the Twitter purchase. Originally helium had committed to borrowing $12.5 cardinal with Tesla banal arsenic collateral. He would get $13 cardinal much from banks and enactment up $21 cardinal successful Tesla shares that would spell to banks successful speech for currency erstwhile the woody closes.

Last week, Musk announced commitments of much than $7 cardinal from investors that would trim the fig of Tesla shares helium would person to station arsenic collateral. Tesla's banal terms gained astir 6% connected Friday to adjacent astatine $769.59, portion Twitter fell astir 10% to $40.72.

Musk's tweet comes a time aft the societal media institution fired 2 of its apical managers. Twitter said the institution is pausing astir hiring, but for captious roles, and is "pulling backmost connected non-labor costs to guarantee we are being liable and efficient."

In a memo sent to employees and confirmed by Twitter, CEO Parag Agrawal said the institution has not deed maturation and gross milestones aft the institution began to put "aggressively" to grow its idiosyncratic basal and revenue.

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