Using Tesla as an example who announced a coming 5-1 stock split yesterday
According to the press release, people that own Tesla stocks on or before Aug 21st will receive an additional 4 shares as dividend at the end of the trading day on Aug 28th. Trading will begin on a stock-adjusted basis on Aug 31st.
Due to the difference in dates for when shareholders qualify for additional Tesla stocks and when trading of Tesla on a stock-adjusted basis begins, does this create a scenario where short-sellers between Aug 22nd-Aug 28th (as Aug 29th and 30th are weekends so the stock market is closed) can make a fortune?
To give an example, assuming one Tesla stock is being traded at $1500 on Aug 21st. Since we know that in theory on Aug 31st when trading begins, one Tesla stock would worth $300 due to stock split (though shares outstanding will increase by 5-fold). Therefore, could short-sellers in theory, borrow one share and sell it between Aug 22nd-Aug 28th inclusive at $1500 then buy the one share back on Aug 31st for $300?