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Why Rivian Stock Plunged Today

By Joe Tenebruso – Nov 18, 2021 at 6:46PM

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That which rises too fast often plummets.

What happened

Shares of Rivian Automotive (RIVN -1.53%) fell 15% on Thursday, furthering a downward slide in the electric vehicle maker's share price that began earlier this week. 

So what

Rivian certainly made a splash in its public market debut on Nov. 10. Investors quickly bid up the EV upstart's shares to a total market value of over $150 billion, placing its market capitalization nearly as high as industry giants Ford (F 2.36%) and General Motors combined.

But after skyrocketing as much as 130% from its $78 initial public offering (IPO) price, Rivian's stock has shed more than 30% of its value in recent days.

A downwardly sloping stock chart.

Image source: Getty Images.

Now what 

Rivian has a lot going for it. Major investors include Ford and Amazon.com (AMZN -0.07%), which own roughly 12% and 20% of Rivian's shares, respectively. Even after today's decline, those equity stakes are valued at approximately $13 billion and $22 billion. That gives Ford and Amazon a lot of incentive to do what they can to bolster Rivian's growth. 

For its part, Amazon has placed an order with Rivian for a whopping 100,000 vehicles. The electric delivery vans will be a major part of the e-commerce behemoth's efforts to battle climate change.

Still, even with the backing of Ford and Amazon, Rivian's success cannot be assured. It's likely to face intense competition from rival EV makers Tesla and Lucid, as well as a host of other challengers. Rivian's shares, therefore, are likely to remain volatile as investors assess its competitive prospects.

John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods Market, an Amazon subsidiary, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. Joe Tenebruso has the following options: long January 2023 $2,400 calls on Amazon. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Amazon and Tesla. The Motley Fool recommends the following options: long January 2022 $1,920 calls on Amazon and short January 2022 $1,940 calls on Amazon. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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