Tesla (TSLA) employed around 100,000 people in the company and its subsidiaries at the end of 2021, according to its annual SEC filing.
The company was not immediately available for comment.
Musk’s stark warning of a potential recession and the knock-on effect for automakers is the most direct and high-profile forecast of its kind in the industry.
While concerns about the risk of a recession have grown, demand for Tesla cars and other electric vehicles has remained strong and many of the traditional indicators of a downturn — including increasing dealer inventories in the United States — have not materialized.
But Tesla has struggled to restart production at its Shanghai factory after Covid-19 lockdowns forced costly outages at the plant.
A “hurricane is right out there down the road coming our way,” Dimon said this week.
Inflation in the United States is hovering at 40-year highs and has caused a jump in the cost of living for Americans, while the Federal Reserve faces the difficult task of dampening demand enough to curb inflation while not causing a recession.
‘Pause all hiring’
Before Musk’s warning, which came in an email titled “pause all hiring worldwide,” Tesla had about 5,000 job postings on LinkedIn from sales in Tokyo and engineers in its new Berlin gigafactory to deep learning scientists in Palo Alto.
Musk’s demand that staff return to the office has already faced pushback in Germany.
“Everyone at Tesla is required to spend a minimum of 40 hours in the office per week,” Musk wrote in his Tuesday email. “If you don’t show up, we will assume you have resigned.”
Musk also engaged on Thursday in a Twitter spat with Australia tech billionaire and Atlassian (TEAM) co-founder Scott Farquhar, who ridiculed the directive in a series of tweets as being “like something out of the 1950s.”
Musk tweeted: “recessions serve a vital economic cleansing function” in response to a tweet by Farquhar who encouraged Tesla employees to look into its remote work positions.