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Tesla sold $936 million worth of bitcoin in the second quarter

Electric car maker Tesla (TSLA) sold $936 million worth of bitcoin during the second quarter, the company said Wednesday, citing uncertainties related to COVID-19 shutdowns in China.

Tesla’s remaining digital asset holdings total $218 million, a sharp drop from its previous stash of $1.2 billion, which had gone untouched over the previous three quarters.

“As of the end of Q2, we have converted approximately 75% of our Bitcoin purchases into fiat currency. Conversions in Q2 added $936M of cash to our balance sheet,” the company said in its earnings release.

Prior to this move, Tesla company hadn’t bought or sold any of its bitcoin holdings since the first quarter of 2021, when it purchased $1.5 billion in bitcoin. The company later shaved off 10% of these holdings, which it sold for for $272 million in cash.

On a call with analysts on Wednesday, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said, “it should be mentioned that the reason we sold a bunch of our Bitcoin holdings was that we were uncertain as to when the COVID lockdowns in China would alleviate. So it was important for us to maximize our cash position, given the uncertainty of the COVID lockdowns in China.”

“We are certainly open to increasing our Bitcoin holdings in future,” Musk said, “so this should not be taken as some verdict on Bitcoin. It’s just that we were concerned about overall liquidity for the company, given COVID shutdowns in China. And we have not sold any of our Dogecoin.”

Tesla on Wednesday reported second quarter results that saw profits top estimates while revenues were in-line with expectations. In the second quarter, adjusted earnings per share came in at $2.27 against estimates for $1.83, while revenues totaled $16.9 billion against expectations for $16.88 billion.

SpaceX owner and Tesla CEO Elon Musk speaks during a conversation with legendary game designer Todd Howard (not pictured) at the E3 gaming convention in Los Angeles, California, U.S., June 13, 2019. REUTERS/Mike Blake

Upon its bitcoin purchase announcement, Musk also announced the company would take bitcoin as payment for its vehicles.

A month later,…

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