Live from New York, it’s… a corporate risk with the power to move the market.
This weekend, Tesla CEO Elon Musk will be the host of “Saturday Night Live,” which, in case the name was not clear enough, is broadcast live. That means NBC relies on Musk to filter its thoughts in real time, despite little evidence, historically, that it is contained in just about anything it wants to say, even when it comes under scrutiny from federal regulators.
Wall Street is already betting that Musk will seize the opportunity to play a little trading game.
Cryptocurrency dogecoin, one of Musk’s favorite market games, has risen in anticipation of its appearance on SNL. And Tesla shares, which fell into bearish territory after hitting all-time highs in January, rose 1.5% on Friday.
Elon Musk says he will send dogecoin to the moonDogecoin was trading around 65 cents on Friday, just below its all-time high of 69 cents. The shiba inu-themed digital currency, which started out as a joke, has risen more than 12,000% since January, largely driven by Musk’s tweets. A few words from Musk on Twitter, where he has more than 53 million followers, sent the cryptocurrency soaring 100%.
“Musk will certainly have a cryptocurrency sketch that will likely go viral for days and further motivate his army of followers to try to push dogecoin to the moon,” wrote Ed Moya, senior market analyst at the trading firm. online Oanda.
ELON MUSK. MILEY CYRUS.
THIS SATURDAY pic.twitter.com/6miGBj90XJ
— Saturday Night Live – SNL (@nbcsnl) May 7, 2021
Last week, Musk called himself a “dogefather” (“godfather of dogecoin”) in a brief tuit promoting his appearance on SNL. The currency soared more than 30%.
So far, Musk tweets and says pretty much anything he wants, including his skepticism about covid-19 and the threats to workers who consider the possibility of unionizing, without serious repercussions. It settled with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on securities fraud charges in 2018 by paying a fine, and is currently appealing a March ruling from the National Labor Relations Board that ordered Tesla to delete a tweet from three years ago that discouraged unionization.
He is famous for smoking marijuana and playing with a samurai sword on Joe Rogan’s podcast in 2018, something that upset shareholders and led to the departure of two high-level executives. NASA, which had hired Musk’s SpaceX to fly the astronauts to the International Space Station, ordered a security review of the company amid concerns about Musk’s behavior, according to multiple news reports.
But Tesla’s share performance in 2020 was so strong, with the stock surging more than 700%, that few, if any, investors seem concerned about its tendency to erratic behavior.
Even so, several members of the SNL cast publicly expressed their concern for giving Musk an even greater platform as the host of the show.
Musk, the self-described “technocrat” of Tesla, is often described as an eccentric visionary or, just as often, as a reckless businessman with Peter Pan syndrome and a penchant for trolling his rivals. In any case, it is fundamentally unpredictable.
He said it best himself in a promotional video posted by SNL on Thursday. “I’m a wild card, so you don’t know what I’m going to do.”