Lucid Group (LCID -3.70%) stock crashed in Friday afternoon trading, falling 5.7% through 3:25 p.m. ET after a note from Morgan Stanley (MS) suggested Lucid could "miss" its target for deliveries in the fourth quarter.
Lucid Group is scheduled to report its Q4 2021 financial results on Monday, Feb. 28. Most analysts are forecasting Lucid will report $36.7 million in Q4 revenues and a $0.35 per share loss (with revenues of $61 million and losses of $1.42 per share for the year).
In Morgan Stanley's note, however, the focus is not on either revenues or losses, but on the number of Lucid Air luxury electric cars Lucid will deliver.
Investors are already assuming that Lucid will report a number "well below" company guidance for Q4, reports TheFly.com. So even if Lucid misses guidance for that quarter, this will not be a "big deal" for the stock -- at least, not in Morgan Stanley's opinion. Instead, MS is more interested in hearing Lucid's projections for 2022, and in particular, whether the company will reiterate its intention to deliver 20,000 cars this year (a goal MS views as a "stretch") or try to ratchet expectations down a bit.
Morgan Stanley may not think investors will be upset if Lucid misses guidance in Q4, but the banker's apparent assumption that such a miss is inevitable actually does seem to be upsetting investors today. Similarly, its suggestion that Lucid might not be able to hit its goal of 20,000 cars produced and delivered in 2022 also seems to be weighing on the stock.
With Lucid stock still trading at a sky-high multiple to sales -- about 74 times presumed 2021 sales -- investors today don't seem to be in any mood to hear more negative talk from Morgan Stanley.