Tesla, the electric car company owned by Elon Musk, did not sell any of the bitcoin (BTC) it holds on its balance sheet during the bear market, a new earnings report from the company reveals.
According to Tesla’s earnings report for the 4th quarter of 2022, the company held $184m worth of “digital assets” as of the end of the year, down from $218m as reported for the third quarter.
The earnings report was released by Tesla on Wednesday this week:
Tesla holding on to its coins
The report showed that Tesla did not sell nor buy any digital assets during the quarter. That makes the 4th quarter the second quarter in a row where Tesla has held on to its digital assets, after it sold off some $936m worth of BTC during the second quarter of 2022 to raise cash amid Covid lockdowns.
The latest report did not directly comment on bitcoin or Tesla’s digital asset strategy going forward. The bitcoin price traded at around $16,500 as of the end of the quarter, but has since gained close to 40% to trade at $23,000.
BTC price in 2022. Source: CoinGecko
Although Tesla does not specify on its balance sheet which digital assets it holds, it is believed that the vast majority of the $184m – if not everything – is held in the form of BTC. However, Elon Musk has indicated in the past that the company also holds some dogecoin (DOGE), although it remains unknown exactly how much.
Tesla has never announced a purchase of DOGE, but it is known that the company accepts the meme coin as payment for some of its merchandise sold online.
Tesla is estimated by Bitcoin company Coinkite to hold some 9,720 BTC on its balance sheet.
“Record breaking year”
In the report, Tesla called 2022 “another record-breaking year,” and said the last quarter of the year brought “the highest-ever quarterly revenue” for the company.
The report added that 2023 will also likely be a challenging year:
“As we progress into 2023, we know that there are questions about the near-term impact of an uncertain macroeconomic environment, and in particular, with rising interest rates. The Tesla team is used to challenges, given the culture required to get the company to where it is today.”
Tesla first added bitcoin to its balance sheet in February of 2021, when it bought USD 1.5bn worth of the digital currency. At the time, BTC traded in the USD 30,000 to USD 40,000 range.
The company does not account for bitcoin as a mark-to-market asset, which means that fluctuations in the bitcoin price only affect earnings when it is bought or sold.