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Elon Musk’s Tesla lost $140m on Bitcoin in 2022

Tesla made a $140m (£113.5m) loss on its Bitcoin investments in 2022, according to filings.

The electric car maker told the US regulator it lost $204m on Bitcoin overall, though it gained back $64m through trading.

Tesla put $1.5bn into Bitcoin in early 2021, with chief executive Elon Musk saying it would be accepted as payment.

It changed course a few weeks later, and Tesla has since sold most of its Bitcoin holdings.

It now holds about $184m of Bitcoin.

Mr Musk has been among the most high-profile champions of cryptocurrency, with his pronouncements on social media often driving significant trading activity.

Tesla’s February 2021 Bitcoin purchase caused the cryptocurrency to rise in price by more than 25% to $48,000 – a record high at the time.

It rose again in March 2021, when Mr Musk tweeted Tesla would allow customers to make their car purchases using Bitcoin. This enabled people in the US to secure orders with the equivalent of a $100 deposit in Bitcoin.

But the cryptocurrency subsequently fell by more than 10% two months later, when the firm backpedalled on this plan, citing climate change concerns.

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According to the UK Treasury, Bitcoin’s global annual energy consumption is estimated to be roughly 39% of the UK’s – and some estimates put the cryptocurrency’s even higher.

Its price soared to almost $70,000 in November 2022 before crashing by more than 50% when Tesla decided to offload most of its holdings.

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