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Why Tesla Stock Jumped Monday

By Daniel Sparks – May 4, 2020 at 1:26PM

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One analyst thinks Tesla might now be one of the most profitable auto companies in the world.

What happened

Shares of Tesla (TSLA -3.46%) jumped on Monday, rising as much as 6.8%. As of 12:30 p.m. EDT, however, the stock was up about 5.8%

The growth stock's gain is likely primarily fueled by an analyst's more upbeat view for the company following the electric-car maker's first-quarter results.

Tesla's Model S, X, 3, and Y

Image source: Tesla.

So what

After seeing a surprise profit in Q1, Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas boosted his 12-month price target for the stock from $440 to $680 on Monday, noting that Tesla could now be the "most profitable and fastest growing" auto company in the world, barring Ferrari.

More specifically, Jonas believes Tesla now has improved operating leverage and long-term gross profit margin potential, as well as lower cost of capital than many of its peers.

Now what

Of course, Tesla's profitability might take a temporary hit as the company copes with the implications of the coronavirus pandemic. With its factory in California currently shut down and stores in many of its markets closed, production and deliveries could plummet during Q2. To this end, the company told investors in its first-quarter update that it was refraining from guiding for profitability during the period.

Further, investors should note that Jonas' 12-month price target for Tesla is below the stock's price today, suggesting shares are getting ahead of themselves. Nevertheless, some investors are likely encouraged by a more optimistic view from a bearish Tesla analyst.

Daniel Sparks has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Tesla. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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