Shares of U.S. electric vehicle (EV) makers Rivian Automotive (RIVN -5.66%) and Lucid Group (LCID -2.44%) are bucking the market trend today. The stocks of both start-ups are on the rise, while Chinese EV company Nio (NIO -1.71%) is dropping. The reasons for the discrepancy are likely a mix of geopolitical tensions and company-specific volatility.
While all three EV makers' stocks started the day down at least 7%, Rivian and Lucid have turned positive. As of 12:41 p.m. ET, Rivian and Lucid shares were up 3.1% and about 1%, respectively, while Nio shares remained lower by 1.1%.
While investors are looking forward to the financial reports coming soon from Rivian and Lucid after their first full quarters of vehicle production, both have been in the news for other reasons recently. Rivian got some mixed news related to its previously announced construction of a second manufacturing plant. And Lucid watchers have pushed shares lower on the news of its first vehicle recall.
Local residents have been pushing back against the plans Rivian announced for a 400,000-vehicle-per-year production facility near Atlanta, Georgia. That's not good news for the company, as it will need to have a good relationship with the community for long-term success. It also has plans to potentially add a battery plant at the site. The state has taken over from local officials and can now help to push the project through without needing local zoning approvals. That's good news, but only if the company and state also satisfy concerns expressed by the local community along the way.
Rivian shares seemed to react negatively to that development yesterday. But they are bouncing back today. Separately, Lucid has recently announced the recall of about 200 of its Air sedans for what it says is a potential mechanical defect that could affect about 1% of units. But after shares of both Rivian and Lucid have dropped by 11% and 17%, respectively, in the past week, investors seem content to pick up some shares today.
Nio, on the other hand, is more likely being affected by potential ramifications from geopolitical uncertainty surrounding Russia's invasion of Ukraine. China will be watched for its reaction, and Nio is also expanding its business into Western Europe this year. How, or whether, that part of the continent will be affected adds to the uncertainty.
Each of these electric vehicle companies comes with risks for investors. Any additional impacts from political unpredictability just adds to volatility, and that is what investors are seeing today.