Time magazine named Elon Musk the Person of the Year, in part because of his impact on financial markets.
This has largely been accomplished through one medium: Twitter.
The Tesla CEO has 67 million followers and a reputation for moving markets and making headlines with his tweets, which are frequently just jokes.
Several tweets, including squabbles with US senators and a rumored one-star review of JPMorgan, made headlines in November alone.
Here’s a collection of 12 of his most influential market tweets, one for each month of the year.
On January 26, near the peak of GameStop mania, when the ailing retailer’s stock soared past $300, Musk sent out a simple tweet: “Gamestonk!!” He shared a link to Wall Street Bets, a popular subreddit that rallied behind GameStop.
He sent a slew of dogecoin-related tweets, which sparked rallies in the meme token, whose mascot is a Japanese shiba inu dog. A February 5 Twitter poll titled “Dogecoin to the Moooonn” boosted the cryptocurrency by 35%.
Musk briefly announced plans to sell a non-fungible token, or NFT, in March, but then quickly backtracked. More importantly, he stated that people could start buying Teslas with bitcoin. The value of bitcoin increased as a result of the tweet.
In an April 28 tweet preceding his appearance as the host of “Saturday Night Live,” he referred to himself as the “dogefather.” This tweet, along with endorsements from billionaire investor Mark Cuban, drove dogecoin up by up to 30%. Musk’s appearance on SNL, on the other hand, resulted in a dogecoin drop.
Musk backtracked on Tesla’s plan to accept bitcoin just two months after announcing it. In a series of tweets, he expressed his concerns about the energy consumption and environmental impact of processing transactions and mining bitcoin. The reversal caused a drop in Tesla stock and the digital asset market.
In June, Musk caused bitcoin’s price to skyrocket after tweeting that the EV maker would begin accepting bitcoin once “there’s confirmation of reasonable (50 percent) clean energy usage by miners with a positive future trend.”
His influence over the markets began to wane in July, and he avoided market-moving tweets for the most part. He did, however, slip in a Matrix meme proclaiming “dogecoin is money.”
Musk chimed in on Twitter after Cuban told CNBC that dogecoin is the best cryptocurrency as a medium of exchange, saying, “I’ve been saying this for a while.”
However, Musk stated in September that dogecoin fees would need to be reduced in order for it to become a more viable payment option. The tweet came after AMC CEO Adam Aron considered accepting dogecoin as payment.
Shiba inu, the self-proclaimed “dogecoin killer,” experienced a meteoric rise in October after Musk tweeted a photo of his new Japanese puppy named “Floki.” He later revealed that he had no crypto holdings in shiba inu, only bitcoin, ether, and dogecoin.
Tesla stock plummeted in November after Musk asked on Twitter if he should sell 10% of his stake because “much has been made recently of unrealized gains being a means of tax avoidance.” Nearly 60% of the 3.5 million people who voted said yes.
In December, he said he would pay $11 billion in taxes if he continued to sell Tesla shares to reach his 10% target. However, he stated in Time’s Person of the Year article that he has no effect on markets. “Markets move all the time, based on nothing, as far as I can tell,” he explained.