What happened

Shares of Chinese electric-vehicle maker NIO (NYSE:NIO) were trading higher on Thursday, after two Wall Street analysts released bullish notes on the company in the wake of its better-than-expected earnings report.

As of noon EST, NIO's American depositary shares were up about 5.2% from Wednesday's closing price.

So what

Analysts from Citi and J.P. Morgan both released bullish notes on NIO during the day on Wednesday. Those notes, and NIO's good earnings report, were probably why auto investors were bidding up NIO's shares up at midday on Thursday. 

A white NIO ET7, a sleek upscale electric sedan.

NIO plans to launch at least two new models in 2021, including the ET7 sedan. Image source: NIO.

J.P. Morgan's Nick Lai said he continues to be positive on NIO's longer-term prospects. Lai noted that NIO's earnings came in 11% better than Wall Street's consensus estimate, that its guidance for fourth-quarter sales was "solid," and that the company is pushing ahead with new models and autonomous-driving development. He raised his bank's price target for NIO's shares to $50, from $46, while maintaining an overweight rating on the stock.

Citi analyst Jeff Chung also continues to be positive on NIO. Chung wrote on Wednesday that NIO's third-quarter results were "solid," and that he sees "upside risks" if the company's production ramp-up continues on course and demand remains robust.

Now what

Chung thinks that NIO could hit 100,000 deliveries in 2021. He's optimistic about NIO's sales growth in the medium term, given that he expects momentum in China's new-energy vehicles sector to remain strong into the first quarter of 2021, and given that NIO plans to increase its monthly production by early next year, to 7,500 vehicles per month from 5,000 now.

Chung maintained his previous price target of $46.40 and buy rating on NIO's shares. 

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