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Analysts 'Not Overly Concerned' About Tesla's CFO Retirement

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Analysts 'Not Overly Concerned' About Tesla's CFO Retirement

Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) investors weren’t thrilled Wednesday evening when CFO Deepak Ahuja announced his second retirement in two years. The stock immediately suffered a 4-percent pullback in after-hours trading. The announcement was made as the company's earnings call concluded.

Ahuja spent about 11 years with Tesla.

"He was one of Tesla's longest serving executives when he first left in 2015. He rejoined Tesla in 2017, replacing then-CFO Jason Wheeler, who abruptly resigned," CNBC reported.

'Not Overly Concerned'

“Senior departures are rarely a positive, but Deepak has stayed with the company through hard times and may be passing on the roll during a time of relative stability,” Loup Ventures managing partner Gene Munster wrote in a blog post.

Two of the automaker’s other bulls expressed more concern about the change.

“Given all the balls that Musk & Co. are trying to juggle at one time (Model 3 ramp in Europe, China Giga build out, debt repayments, cost cutting initiatives) the last thing the bulls wanted to see was a CFO departure at this juncture,” Wedbush wrote. “That said, we are not overly concerned about speed bumps from this CFO baton hand off although it does add more headline risk to the name in the near-term.”

The optimists expect no impact on Tesla’s near-term results.

“The CFO transition took us by surprise, though we believe Deepak’s retirement reflects the grueling pace at TSLA and is not indicative of expected future financial performance,” Baird analyst Ben Kallo wrote.

Morgan Stanley is withholding judgment on the change until its meeting with new CFO Zack Kirkhorn.

Tesla's stock traded at $307.59 per share Thursday afternoon.

Related Links:

Tesla Rounds Out 2018 With Mixed Q4 Earnings

Model 3 Mayhem, China Prospects: Analysts Reflect On Tesla's Mixed Q4 Earnings

Latest Ratings for TSLA

DateFirmActionFromTo
Jul 2019ReiteratesMarket Outperform
Jun 2019MaintainsSell
Jun 2019Initiates Coverage OnUnderperform

View More Analyst Ratings for TSLA
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