It’s been a terrific year for Tesla (TSLA) CEO Elon Musk. From losses, controversies, and bears to profits, growth plans, and bulls, he has seen it all. Tesla stock is up 8.1% this year, and 49% this quarter. The recent run-up in the stock is due to a series of factors stirred by Musk.
Elon Musk squashes shorts
This year, Elon Musk has brought bad news for Tesla bears such as David Einhorn and Jim Chanos. Einhorn has attacked Musk on several fronts, including his self-driving car ambitions, comments, and tweets, and Tesla cars’ safety features.
The run-up in Tesla stock after the company’s third-quarter earnings has affected short-sellers. Wall Street analysts had expected Tesla to post a loss, but it came up with a surprise profit.
Tesla stock jumped immediately after the earnings release. Shorts lost more than $1 billion that day. Einhorn’s Greenlight fund was also impacted. To learn more, read Tesla Stock Gains Dim Einhorn’s Greenlight.
Notably, Jim Cramer, a previous Tesla critic, has now turned into a Tesla bull. The profound change in the scenario is the result of Tesla’s Gigafactory 3 updates, Model Y updates, Gigafactory 4 announcements, and Cybertruck unveiling.
Musk outlines Tesla’s path
This year, Musk has turned Tesla around, from a loss to profit. He was able to achieve his target of cost reduction. Plus, Musk was able to get China’s Gigafactory 3 online in just ten months, a fantastic feat to accomplish in a foreign country. The ramp-up of the Model 3 from the factory is set to boost Tesla’s volumes next year. To learn more, read Can Tesla Stock Rise to $500 with China’s Help?
Musk has been applying his learnings from China to Tesla’s Model Y setup in Fremont. Based on those experiences and acquired efficiencies, Musk moved the Model Y launch to summer 2020. Furthermore, Deutsche Bank analyst Emmanuel Rosner believes that, with the progress at the site, Musk could launch the Model Y in the first quarter of 2020. To learn more, read Tesla Model Y: Could Musk Deliver It in Q1 2020?
Furthermore, Musk has laid down a clear outline for future growth. He has announced the setup of the Gigafactory 4 in Germany, which will produce the Model Y. Musk also plans to create manufacturing sites around the globe. He intends to produce the Model Y in China, and the Model 3 in Europe. Musk also intends to manufacture Tesla Semis, Roadsters, and pickup trucks in the US.
Elon Musk’s movie-inspired Cybertruck
Musk’s love for the movies was reflected in Tesla’s Cybertruck design. The all-electric pickup truck created a stir. While some loved it, others criticized it. Analysts seemed divided.
However, Piper Jaffray raised its price target for the stock and called it a “must-own.” Morgan Stanley assigned a bullish price target of $500. ARK Invest expects Tesla’s stock price to rise to $4,000 in the next five years. To learn more, read Can Tesla’s Surging Cybertruck Orders Lift Its Stock?
Musk’s affair with Twitter
This year, Musk used Twitter for many of Tesla’s announcements. The platform has turned out to be a vital information tool for Musk. He tweets about product launches, software updates, SpaceX, the company’s outlook, and more. Recently, Musk’s follower base touched the 30 million mark. That’s a massive audience at his disposal. It’s no surprise that his tweets receive a lot of attention.
However, some of the tweets also land him in trouble. Last year, he was in the SEC’s crosshairs due to his tweet about taking the company private at $420. This year, an offensive tweet about a British caver has resulted in a lawsuit for Musk. To learn more about Tesla’s history on Twitter, read Tesla, Elon Musk, and the Great Twitter Game!
It’s been a good year for Elon Musk. It looks like he has laid stepping stones for Tesla’s growth. With Musk’s outline for capacity expansions and product launches, Tesla is set to see better earnings in the years to come.
Tesla stock and its valuation have been surging. To learn more, read Tesla Stock: Is the ‘Dean of Valuation’ Wrong on TSLA?