PALO ALTO (CBS / AP) — Shares of Bay Area electric carmaker Tesla, suffering one of the worst stretches in company history, rebounded Thursday after CEO Elon Musk told employees that orders are up.
The gyrations Thursday were indicators of a volatile day for the shares, which have shed about 60% of their value in three weeks and are trading at the lowest levels since late 2016.
Musk told employees in a memo late Wednesday that the company had over 50,000 net new orders so far this quarter, and that based on current trends, Tesla Inc. has a chance of exceeding the record 90,700 deliveries set in the fourth quarter of last year. The memo was circulating on the internet and confirmed as authentic by a person with knowledge of its origin. The person didn’t want to be identified because the memo was confidential.
Stock in the Palo Alto company fell 3% after the opening bell but then rebounded within an hour. It leveled off by mid-morning and was trading was trading up slightly at $193.33.
Shares were under significant pressure early after Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas told investors on a private call Wednesday that demand for Tesla’s cars was lower than predicted. He says if it continues into next year then Tesla will become a restructuring story. A recording of the call was obtained by The Associated Press.
Jonas also says that Tesla has 49,000 employees and is the size of a company that sells a million vehicles per year. Last year it sold 245,000.
Musk’s memo said the company needs to sustain production of 1,000 Model 3s each day, something that the company has done multiple days.
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