Shares of the leading electric vehicle (EV) maker Tesla (TSLA -2.76%) have seesawed since eclipsing a $1 trillion market capitalization at the end of 2021. Though the stock has climbed 10% in the past six months, it remains 26% in the red since the beginning of this year, and now amounts to a market cap of $930 billion. And given the unstable economic landscape, which is overwhelmed by high inflation, rising interest rates, and the war in Ukraine, I wouldn't be surprised to see the EV stock continue to draw back in the coming trading sessions.
The big question is, should long-term investors accumulate shares of the EV king now? After all, Tesla dominates 26% of the global battery electric vehicle (BEV) market, an industry that is forecast to register a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 25.4% from 2021 through 2028, according to Fortune Business Insights. Since it's a clear leader in a secular growth market, investors should ignore short-term noise and focus on the long-term fundamentals of the company's business.
Let's look at where Tesla currently stands to help investors decide if it's a sound investment today.
The EV king continues to thrust ahead
Despite several ongoing headwinds, the EV maker delivered a strong performance in its second quarter of 2022. Its total revenue increased 41.6% year-over-year to $16.9 billion, ending on par with Wall Street estimates, and its adjusted earnings per share climbed 56.6% to $2.27, beating consensus forecasts by 26.9%. Production and deliveries declined from the previous quarter but still grew 25.3% and 26.5% year-over-year, up to 258,580 and 254,695, respectively. The slump compared to Q1 was due to continued supply chain restraints and the COVID-related shutdown in its Shanghai factory.
On the bright side, the company still managed to generate $621 million in free cash flow (FCF). It finished the quarter with the highest vehicle production month in history, serving as great momentum heading into the latter half of 2022. Gross margin and operating margin rose 89 and 358 basis points from a year ago, to 25% and 14.6%, respectively, though they finished below the 29.1% and 19.2% reported in Q1. In my opinion, the worst of Tesla's latest challenges are in the past, and the company is poised to provide investors with impressive financials for the remainder of the year.
This year, Wall Street analysts forecast the company's total revenue to surge 56% year-over-year to $84.0 billion, and its adjusted earnings per share to soar 83.8% to $12.46. In 2023, analysts expect Tesla's top and bottom lines to grow another 42.4% and 36%, respectively. Those are rock-solid growth rates no matter what, but I wouldn't be shocked if the Elon Musk-led business is able to outperform expectations as macro-related headwinds continue to ease.
Should investors purchase Tesla stock?
I certainly believe that now is a good time to purchase shares of the EV giant. While macroeconomic headwinds have prevented the company from reaching its full potential in past quarters, it has still managed to exceed expectations and achieve robust growth rates. Better yet, I think Tesla's best days are yet to come -- once the broader economic landscape clears up, the EV juggernaut is in a prime position to experience massive success. Prudent investors shouldn't hesitate to pounce on Tesla while it's down. In fact, now is a fantastic moment to place a long-term bet on the world-leading electric car maker.