Tesla short sellers have made $8.2 billion betting against Elon Musk’s company this year as tech stocks crashed

Short-sellers have made around $8.2 billion betting against Elon Musk’s Tesla in 2022 so far, after years of bruising losses when the electric-vehicle maker’s stock confounded expectations.

They’ve also reaped rewards from this year’s market sell-off more generally, making $62.5 billion in realized and unrealized gains on stocks in the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 index. That’s according to figures shared with Insider by data provider Ortex.

Stock markets have tumbled in 2022 as inflation has soared and central banks have hiked interest rates, while Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has added to the volatility.

Technology stocks — which soared on the back of coronavirus-era stimulus — have been hit particularly hard. The Nasdaq 100 index had fallen 22% as of Friday’s close, while Tesla was down around 28%.

The drop has provided opportunities for short-sellers — investors who bet against companies by selling borrowed shares, before buying them back later and pocketing the difference between the prices. Many investors also short stocks to limit the risk in their portfolio.