Nation & World

SEC subpoenas Tesla on Model 3 production estimates

Commission looking at Model 3 production estimates

Reuters

Rows of the new Tesla Model 3 electric vehicles are seen in Richmond, Calif.
Reuters Rows of the new Tesla Model 3 electric vehicles are seen in Richmond, Calif.

Tesla said on Friday it received a subpoena from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission regarding Model 3 production forecasts the electric-car maker made in 2017.

Tesla repeatedly has missed its own production deadlines for the Model 3 sedan, and is being investigated by multiple government agencies for possibly misleading investors about its business.

The company said in a filing that no government agency in ongoing investigations has concluded that any wrongdoing occurred.

“It sounds like the SEC is looking at whether or not the projections that had been made were based on fact or not,” said Jay Dublow, a partner with Pepper Hamilton LLP.

“It is possible for another SEC enforcement action down the road if it turns out that the projections were purposefully or recklessly made without a basis,” Dublow, a former branch chief in the SEC’s enforcement division, said.

A Tesla spokesperson told Reuters in October that the company had received a voluntary request from the Department of Justice for documents related to Model 3 production forecasts.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation also is examining whether Tesla misstated information about Model 3 production going back to early 2017, according to reports.

ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW ADVERTISEMENT

Peter Haveles, a partner at Trial and Dispute Resolution Practice Group, said the SEC would not be able to press charges if there was a basis for the projections.

“However, as was the case with the tweets regarding going private, if the SEC concludes that the projections and comments were made without a reasonable factual basis, it is likely that the SEC will commence a new enforcement proceeding against Tesla,” Haveles said.

Give us feedback

We value your trust and work hard to provide fair, accurate coverage. If you have found an error or omission in our reporting, tell us here.

Or if you have a story idea we should look into? Tell us here.

CONTINUE READING

Give us feedback

We value your trust and work hard to provide fair, accurate coverage. If you have found an error or omission in our reporting, tell us here.

Or if you have a story idea we should look into? Tell us here.