Skip to main content
Access every election story that matters
Enjoy unlimited digital access
$1.99
per week for 24 weeks
Access every election story that matters
Enjoy unlimited digital access
$1.99
per week
for 24 weeks
// //

The logo of car manufacturer Tesla is seen at a dealership in London on May 14.

MATTHEW CHILDS/Reuters

The family office run by “Big Short” investor Michael Burry has disclosed a large bearish bet via options on Tesla Inc.

Scion Asset Management said in a regulatory filing on Monday that it had put options on 800,100 shares in Tesla as of the end of the first quarter. Based on Tesla’s closing price of $667.93 at the end of the first quarter the value of that many shares would be about $534 million.

Details on the strike price of the puts, their value and whether they are part of a broader trade were not available. Scion Asset Management did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the matter.

Story continues below advertisement

While the actual value of the options position was not known, the Securities and Exchange Commission rules state positions under 10,000 shares and less than $200,000 in total market value are not required to be disclosed.

Put options give investors the right to sell shares at a certain price in the future.

It is possible the puts disclosed in the filing may be part of a larger trade that would curb losses if the put position goes against the fund, options analysts said.

“That could be the long leg of a put spread,” said Henry Schwartz, head of product intelligence at Cboe, referring to a strategy involving a combination of purchase and sale of put options.

“That said, since they reported no long shares, and Burry is a pure ‘value’ investor it probably is a short bet,” he said.

One of the investors profiled in the book “The Big Short’ and the film of the same name for betting more than $1 billion against the U.S. housing bubble, Burry has been skeptical of Tesla’s sky-high valuations.

Powered by strong sales and its first annual profit, Tesla shares jumped more than 700% last year and hit a record high of $883 per share in January. But they have since fallen as hedge fund managers raise concerns that the stock is overvalued.

Story continues below advertisement

The shares closed at $576 per share on Monday, valuing the electric car maker at around $555 billion.

Burry also said last year that sales of green regulatory credits to Fiat Chrysler which Tesla has relied on to generate profits will dwindle.

Stellantis, owner of Fiat Chrysler, said this month it expects to achieve its European carbon dioxide emissions targets this year without environmental credits bought from Tesla.

Be smart with your money. Get the latest investing insights delivered right to your inbox three times a week, with the Globe Investor newsletter. Sign up today.

Your Globe

Build your personal news feed

  1. Follow topics and authors relevant to your reading interests.
  2. Check your Following feed daily, and never miss an article. Access your Following feed from your account menu at the top right corner of every page.

Follow topics related to this article:

View more suggestions in Following Read more about following topics and authors
Report an error
Tickers mentioned in this story
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

If you do not see your comment posted immediately, it is being reviewed by the moderation team and may appear shortly, generally within an hour.

We aim to have all comments reviewed in a timely manner.

Comments that violate our community guidelines will not be posted.

UPDATED: Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies