2 Reasons Why Tesla Has Become An EV Stock Laggard


For years, Tesla Inc TSLA was the top electric vehicle investment to own in the market, generating huge returns and leaving legacy auto stocks in the dust.

Yet DataTrek Research co-founder Nicholas Colas said Tuesday that there has been a clear shift in investor sentiment toward Tesla relative to other EV stocks in recent months.

Colas On Tesla’s Underperformance: Tesla shares are down about 15% since the beginning of May, and Colas said that weakness is particularly noticeable when compared to the impressive performance of other EV stocks in that same time:

  • Fisker Inc FSR is up about 33%.
  • Canoo Inc GOEV is up about 2%.
  • Lordstown Motors Corp RIDE is up about 35%.
  • Nikola Corporation NKLA is up about 53%.
  • ChargePoint Holdings Inc CHPT is up about 17%.
  • Blink Charging Co BLNK is up about 11%.
  • Nio Inc - ADR NIO is up about 10%.
  • Xpeng Inc - ADR XPEV is up about 28%.
  • Li Auto Inc LI is up about 35%.

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Colas calculated the average return of this group of EV stocks since the beginning of May is about 21%, which means Tesla underperformed the group by about 36% during that stretch.

Colas On Tesla Stock Weakness: Colas said there are two possible reasons for Tesla’s underperformance.

First, Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s antics, most recently related to Bitcoin BTC/USD and Dogecoin DOGE/USD, are causing serious EV investors to look for alternatives to Tesla, the DataTrek co-founder said. 

The second potential explanation is that Tesla is no longer the exciting EV play with huge upside that it once was. The company is now a member of the S&P 500 and has a $594-billion market cap.

Colas said the likeliest explanation for Tesla’s underperformance is a combination of the two catalysts.

“The rally in what are ultimately small and/or deeply unprofitable companies since the start of May is a useful tell that underneath a seemingly dull market ... animal spirits are actually quite high,” Colas said.

Benzinga’s Take: Tesla still has tremendous long-term growth ahead in the next decade, but much of that growth is likely already priced into the stock’s nearly $600-billion market cap.

It’s understandable why many EV investors looking for major upside have moved on to betting on stocks that could be the next big thing in the EV space.

Photo courtesy of Tesla. 

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Posted In: Analyst ColorTop StoriesAnalyst RatingsTrading IdeasDataTrek Researchelectric vehiclesEVsNicholas Colas
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