With the Nasdaq Composite index dropping by more than 2.5% today, it's not surprising to see many growth stocks taking a beating. Three not-yet-profitable electric vehicle makers fit the bill as speculative growth stocks. And shares of Rivian Automotive (RIVN 4.56%), Lucid Group (LCID 5.01%), and Workhorse Group (WKHS 4.98%) were all taking a hit early. As of 1:54 p.m. ET, there was some relief for the stocks, but shares still traded lower as follows:
- Rivian down 2.4%
- Lucid down 2.6%
- Workhorse down 11.7%
There was also news contributing to some of the day's drops.
Workhorse announced today that it entered into an agreement with one of its senior secured note holders to eliminate its debt in exchange for an issuance of shares. That deal doesn't look appealing for existing shareholders, especially at the $4.75 share price that High Trail Capital will get as a basis. That's a discount to the $5.04 per share level where the stock closed yesterday.
Rivian also provided some news today. The electric vehicle start-up warned investors of added risks recently in a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing. But last night Rivian said it produced 2,553 vehicles in the first quarter of 2022. The company added that it remains "well positioned" to hit the 25,000 vehicle production level guidance it recently provided to investors. That was a reduced volume to what many expected before its March 10 projection, however, as the company struggles with supply chain and other issues.
Many automotive companies mirrored what Rivian had to say regarding supply chain constraints as well as increased raw material costs. Lucid also dropped its estimate for 2022 vehicle production by up to 40% when it reported its fourth-quarter update at the end of February. Both stocks are down significantly so far in 2022. Rivian shares have dropped 60% year to date, while Lucid stock is down 39%. That has aligned the market capitalization of both around the $38 billion mark.
That valuation still builds much success into the recent share prices, so any news that appears to signal a delay in ramping up production is likely to knock the stocks down. Workhorse has had its own struggles, having been forced to recall and repair 41 electric delivery vans that it had already sent to customers. It also suspended production due to the quality issue.
While strengthening its financial position is a positive for potential long-term success, the dilution to existing shareholders isn't sitting well with investors today. Ultimately, each of these names will need to be shipping high volumes of their EV products at a sustained rate for investors to warm up to them over the long run.