Jeff Bezos Sells Nearly $2 Billion U.S. Of Amazon Stock

Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) founder and Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos has sold nearly $2 billion U.S. worth of shares in the online retailer, according to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Bezos sold $684 million U.S. worth of Amazon shares on May 4 after selling $1.27 billion U.S. worth of stock on May 3. In total, he’s sold $1.95 billion U.S. worth of Amazon shares so far in the month of May.

The transactions were made as part of a prearranged 10b5-1 trading plan, according to the SEC. The stocks sales come one week after Amazon reported first-quarter earnings results, crushing Wall Street’s expectations as its business continues to benefit from a pandemic-fueled surge in e-commerce activity.

Bezos has accelerated his stock sales in recent years, selling $4.1 billion worth of shares last February and $3 billion U.S. worth of Amazon stock last November.

Bezos has said he plans to sell at least $1 billion U.S. in Amazon stock each year to fund his space exploration company, Blue Origin, which announced on May 5 that it will launch its first astronaut crew to space this summer. Bezos is also allocating capital to his Day One Fund, the organization he launched in September 2018 to provide education in low-income communities.

These initiatives are expected to become a greater focus for Bezos once he steps down from his role as CEO of Amazon in this year’s third quarter. Bezos will turn leadership of the company over to AWS Chief Executive Officer Andy Jassy and assume the new role of executive chairman on Amazon’s board of directors.