Palantir CEO says short sellers bet against great companies ‘so they can pay for their coke’


Watch CNBC's full interview with Palantir CEO Alex Karp

Palantir CEO Alex Karp skewered short sellers — investors who bet on the decline in a company’s stock price — in an interview with CNBC on Wednesday.

“I love burning the short sellers,” Karp told CNBC’s Sara Eisen on “Money Movers.” “Almost nothing makes a human happier than taking the lines of cocaine away from these short sellers, who like, are going short on a truly great American company. Not just ours, but just love pulling down great American companies so they can pay for their coke.”

Shares of Palantir jumped 9.8% on March 6 after Palantir announced its Tactical Intelligence Targeting Access Node was selected by the U.S. Army. TITAN uses artificial intelligence to provide targeting information for missiles.

When a stock goes up, short sellers are on the hook to buy back shares, potentially at a huge loss.

“The best thing that could happen to them is we will lead their coke dealers to their homes after they can’t pay their bills,” Karp said. “You know, do your thing, we’ll do our thing.”

Palantir shares are up about 47% this year. Roughly 5% of the company’s outstanding shares that are publicly available to be traded were being sold short as of late February.

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