Tesla Shares Plummet as Company Misses Vehicle Delivery Estimates - Again

Tesla Shares Plummet as Company Misses Vehicle Delivery Estimates - Again

Tesla Shares Plummet as Company Misses Vehicle Delivery Estimates - Again

While Tesla reported yet another historic quarter that saw the company delivering an average of 1,000 vehicles per day, Wall Street has not taken kindly to the electric auto maker's Q4 2018 results.

Hargreaves Lansdown analyst Nicholas Hyett estimated in a client note that if Tesla continues to deliver cars at the current rate, the price cut will mean $700 million in lost revenue in 2019. The company's stock price fell nearly 10 percent upon opening (it has since rebounded slightly).

Tesla released sales numbers for the last quarter of 2018.

With Musk having generally reigned in his own behavior and the company's Model 3 production figures much closer to weekly production targets, the alarm bells that were ringing six months ago have quieted considerably. During morning trading, stocks fell almost 8.7 percent from Tuesday's closing of $332.80, sliding to a floor of $303.96.

Tesla delivered 90,700 vehicles during the fourth quarter, a new all-time high, closing the year with a total of 245,240 deliveries compared to 102,807 in 2017. The company also announced plans during the fourth quarter to start selling a $45,000 version of the Model 3, before raising the price $46,000.

Tesla boss Musk is under intense pressure to deliver on production promises, with the Model 3 billed as its first mass market vehicle and its path to profitability.

Ives added that Tesla shares are "hypersensitive to any issue around Model 3" and that it will remain a stock that is "guilty until proven innocent" until it discloses quarterly earnings figures next year.

"The price cut is what's driving the stock lower, as it openly acknowledges the sunset of subsidy dollars is a material headwind", said Craig Irwin, an analyst with Roth Capital Partners.

General Motors sold its 200,000th electric vehicle in the United States in 2018, similarly triggering a phase-out of the federal tax credit, a source said on Wednesday. This move is in response to the fact that Tesla customers can no longer claim the full $7,500 federal tax credit on a new EV purchase as of January 1, 2019.

The 63 150 Model 3s Tesla handed over to customers in the fourth quarter trailed the roughly 63 700 average analyst estimate.

The number represents a 7.7 percent increase over the 80,142 vehicles the company produced in the previous three-month period, and a new record for Tesla.

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