In addition to his broad-based share sales, Tesla boss Elon Musk also donated shares worth billions from the electric car manufacturer last fall.

At the time of the donation in November, the five million shares were worth almost six billion dollars.

The announcement by the US Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday contained no indication of who got the papers.

The donation could also help ease Musk's billion-dollar tax bill after the stock sales.

Musk had to redeem stock options granted about a decade before they expired.

This in turn led to a tax bill – and in order to pay it, the Tesla boss had to sell shares.

Musk went further and had Twitter users commit to a vote to sell a tenth of his Tesla stake.

In December, he estimated that he would pay around $11 billion in taxes last year.

The rise in the price of Tesla shares in recent years has made Musk by far the richest person in the world.

The financial service Bloomberg currently estimates Musk's fortune in its billionaire ranking at $ 227 billion (200 billion euros).

He is far ahead of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos with 180 billion dollars.