Musk testifies Saudis backed taking Tesla private

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STORY: Tesla CEO Elon Musk took the stand for a second day on Monday in the trial over allegations he misled investors when the billionaire tweeted in 2018 that he had "funding secured" to take the electric car company private.

Musk testified that he was sure he had backing from Saudi financiers at the time but said the fund later backpedaled on its commitment.

Musk acknowledged he did not discuss a takeover price with representatives of Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund, but said they made clear they would do what it took to make a buyout happen. And he said he was "upset" when they later "appeared to be backpedaling."

The lawyer for the investors told the court that written evidence does not support Musk's claim that the Saudi fund made a commitment to him, adding that minutes of a meeting between Musk and the Saudis showed they wanted to learn more about Musk's plan.

Investors say they lost millions as a result of Musk's Aug. 7, 2018 tweet saying that he had "funding secured" to take Tesla private at $420 per share.

Tesla's stock price surged after Musk's tweets, and later fell as it became clear the buyout would not materialize.

Musk testified that when he sent the tweet, he was saying QUOTE "not that it will happen, but that I am thinking about it" and that funding was secured, in his "opinion."