For the world's richest person, even procrastination apparently pays well.
By waiting three weeks to publicly reveal his sizable ownership stake in Twitter, Tesla CEO Elon Musk earned as much as $156 million, legal and securities experts told The Washington Post.
Investors are required to notify the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission within five days of surpassing a 5 percent stake in a public company. Musk — who regularly misses the deadlines he has set for Tesla product launches — reached that threshold March 14, filings show, but didn't disclose it until April 4, 11 business days late.
In the meantime, Musk continued to buy shares at about $39 each, bringing his total stake to 9.2 percent. He's now the social media platform's largest shareholder and has been given a seat on its board.
After Musk disclosed his purchases, Twitter stock rose about 30 percent to more than $50 a share last week.
That translates to a profit of roughly $156 million, according to David Kass, a finance professor at the University of Maryland's business school.
"I really don't know what's going through his mind," Kass told the Post. "Was he ignorant or knowledgeable that he was violating securities law?"
The experts interviewed said Musk could be fined for the delay but that the penalty would probably be only in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.