A post by a member of the Reddit investor forum r/GME in March that speculated billionaires were increasing their short positions in GameStop Corp. (NYSE:GME) ahead of their impending divorces is now seen as a bull case for the videogame retailer’s value.
What Happened: Following the announcement of the divorce of Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) co-founder Bill Gates and his wife Melinda Gates on Monday, members of the Reddit board r/GME discovered a nearly two-month-old post by user Jobom3 that linked a spike in borrowed GameStop shares to the possibility of billionaires preparing for their divorces, as first observed by MarketWatch.
A Reddit post on March 11 noted that more than one million GameStop shares were borrowed from exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in the pre-market. The move was seen as a new confrontation in the ongoing battle between hedge funds trying to short GameStop and investors who wanted to prove the company is fundamentally undervalued.
In reply, Jobom3 said, “I think they are just buying time to secure their personal assets. Moving them to offshore or divorce their wives and put the money in their name. Tricks like that.”
Members of the Reddit board credited Jobom3 with predicting the Gates’ divorce and noted that the divorce supported their speculation that some wealthy short sellers of GameStop are fighting the short squeeze in a bid to protect their assets from the possibility of a market implosion.
Why It Matters: Creating a company like Microsoft helped Bill Gates build great wealth along the way. Gates left Microsoft in 2008 to concentrate on his philanthropic endeavors.
In 2000, Gates and Melinda began the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which is the world's largest private charitable foundation with a trust endowment of $49.8 billion.
The latest regulatory filing by the foundation disclosed ownership stakes, as of December 31, 2020, in Amyris (NASDAQ:AMRS), Atreca (NASDAQ:BCEL), BioNTech SE (NASDAQ:BNTX), Curevac N.V. (NASDAQ:CVAC) and Vir Biotechnology Inc. (NASDAQ:VIR). However, the filing does not show any holding in GameStop shares.
Price Action: GameStop shares closed 0.9% lower in Tuesday’s regular trading session at $160.73, but added 0.7% in the after-hours session to $161.89.
Read Next: 5 Things You Might Not Know About Bill Gates
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