EXCLUSIVE: Longtime Tesla Bear Says Cathie Wood Is A Destroyer Of Capital, '100% Incorrect' About Elon Musk-Led Company

Zinger Key Points
  • "Cathie Wood has been among the biggest destroyers of capital we've ever seen," Gordon Johnson says.
  • Johnson says the only way Wood's investments can outperform is if the Federal Reserve pivots.
EXCLUSIVE: Longtime Tesla Bear Says Cathie Wood Is A Destroyer Of Capital, '100% Incorrect' About Elon Musk-Led Company

A longtime Tesla Inc TSLA bear is poking holes in the investing approach of one of Wall Street's biggest Tesla bulls.

What Happened: GLJ Research's Gordon Johnson called out Ark Invest's Cathie Wood for what he views as a flawed investment approach Tuesday on Benzinga's YouTube show "Stock Market Movers."

"Cathie Wood has been among the biggest destroyers of capital we've ever seen ... she needs to start being asked real, hard, tough questions," Johnson said. 

Johnson Says No Movement On Robotaxis: Wood increased her Tesla position on Monday with the stock lagging the broader market after the Elon Musk-led company reported third-quarter vehicle deliveries below analyst estimates. 

Johnson noted that investors should be asking her why she's buying. Wood's popularity rose after making early calls on Tesla's future. She was right about the trajectory of Tesla shares, but her thesis was wrong, Johnson said. 

"Her entire thesis fundamentally was robotaxis and they've done nothing there. She's been 100% incorrect," he said. 

Johnson reiterated that no one seems to be asking the questions that matter. Instead, Wood just continues to destroy capital, he added.

"This isn't me coming down on Cathie Wood. This is just me stating facts," Johnson said. 

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How The Fed Could Reverse ARKK Losses: The longtime Tesla bear told Benzinga there is a glimmer of hope for Ark Invest. Although the firm's flagship fund, the ARK Innovation ETF ARKK, is down about 58% for the year, Wood's investments could reverse the slump if the Federal Reserve pivots from its policy stance, he said.

"If the Fed pivots, I think she'll be fine. I think we'll go back to this crazy money printing environment where money-losing stocks are the ones to own," Johnson said.

"But I just don't think the Fed can do that right now."

Services inflation is at 6.1% and it's not being impacted by wild swings in commodity prices. Rent prices are up about 13% year-over-year on average. The Consumer Price Index is a lagging indicator and still has a lot of catching up to do, Johnson said. 

"This idea that inflation has peaked, I think, is wrong," Johnson said. 

"So I think the pivot folks are wrong and I think the Cathie Woods of the world, until they pivot, are going to be in a world of pain."

TSLA Price Action: Tesla has a 52-week high of $414.50 and a 52-week low of $206.86.

The stock was up 2.5% at $248.45 Tuesday afternoon, according to Benzinga Pro.

Photo: courtesy of Tesla.

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