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Why Ford Motor Company Stock Is Up Today

By John Rosevear – Jan 3, 2022 at 9:17AM

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Tesla's big news has two positive implications for Ford.

What happened

Shares of Ford Motor Company (F 2.52%) were moving higher on Monday, up about 4.2% from Friday's close as of noon ET. 

Ford was one of many companies with exposure to the electric vehicle (EV) space to post gains in Monday morning's trading after EV giant Tesla (TSLA 6.24%) reported fourth-quarter deliveries that crushed Wall Street's expectations.

So what

Tesla reported its Q4 delivery totals over the weekend, and they were very good: The company delivered 308,600 of its upscale EVs during the quarter, a record; Wall Street had expected deliveries of just 263,000. 

But what does that have to do with Ford? 

First, Tesla's big deliveries total suggests that demand for EVs remains extremely high. That's reassuring news for Ford, which is making a big and costly bet that demand for its upcoming electric F-150 Lightning pickup will be strong.

A 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Pro, an electric pickup truck optimized for commercial use, shown on a construction site.

Ford's big bet on the electric F-150 Lightning is looking like a brilliant one after Tesla's blowout Q4 deliveries total. The F-150 Lightning will begin shipping this spring. Image source: Ford Motor Company.

Second, the fact that Tesla was able to build that many vehicles in the quarter suggests that the supply chain issues which have plagued automakers around the world may be easing. While Tesla has had some insulation from the semiconductor shortages -- it makes some of its own chips in-house -- it hasn't been immune to disruptions, as CEO Elon Musk has acknowledged.

Ford itself was hit hard by the shortages early last year, but by September it had managed to increase production enough to take market share from rivals that were still struggling. Its results for October and November were also strong, helping Ford to make further gains against key competitors like General Motors and Toyota. 

Ford is set to report its December U.S. sales tomorrow; Tesla's report is a hint that Ford's run of success could continue.

Now what

Auto investors' eyes will turn to Ford when it reports those December U.S. sales results tomorrow. Beyond the headline numbers, I'll be looking to see how Ford's efforts to rebuild inventories of its key products -- the F-Series pickups, the big SUVs, and the Mach-E — are faring. All are critical to the company's continued success as we move into 2022. 

John Rosevear owns Ford and General Motors. The Motley Fool owns and recommends Tesla. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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