Short-seller Jim Chanos says Elon Musk 'may be misleading investors'

  • Jim Chanos says "stunning" executive turnover at Tesla is a bad sign for the company.
  • Elon Musk "may be misleading investors," Chanos tells CNBC.
  • "I think Elon Musk has crossed the Rubicon in terms of making statements to investors that he might rue later," he adds.

Short-seller Jim Chanos is blasting Elon Musk's leadership at Tesla.

Musk "may be misleading investors," he said Thursday on CNBC's "Squawk Box." "I think Elon Musk has crossed the Rubicon in terms of making statements to investors that he might rue later."

The Kynikos Associates hedge fund manager, who confirmed his firm is short Tesla shares, cited Musk's announcements about future products.

"He said the Roadster will be available in 2020 and Semi [truck] will be entering production next year," Chanos said. "I don't think either of those are going to happen."

He believes recent management turnover at the electric car maker is a bad omen for Tesla.

"The No. 1 sign of impending problems is mass executive departures," Chanos said. "This is becoming a torrent at Tesla. ... [It is] stunning the accelerating rate of executive departures."

Chanos also predicts Musk will leave as Tesla's CEO and spend more time at SpaceX.

Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Its shares closed up 1.7 percent Thursday.

Chanos is founder and managing partner of Kynikos Associates, one of the world's largest short-selling investment firms. He is lauded for his prescient negative calls on Enron and Tyco. His firm has over $2 billion in assets under management.

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