Tesla stock (NASDAQ:TSLA) is showing some signs of recovery on Wednesday as it received an optimistic $450 price target from Jefferies Financial Group. The new vote of confidence comes amidst Tesla’s efforts to push the Model 3 to Europe, China, and the United States during the final days of the first quarter.
A research report issued by Jefferies’ equities research analysts to the firm’s clients on Wednesday points to a potential upside of over 68% from the stock’s $260.42 closing price on Tuesday. The researchers currently have a “Buy” rating on the electric car maker.
Tesla’s shares have proven volatile this month, following the company’s launch of the $35,000 Model 3, the debut of the Model Y, and headwinds from Elon Musk’s ongoing row with the Securities and Exchange Commission. RBC analyst Joseph Spak recently cut his price target for Tesla shares to $210 each in a note on Monday, citing what he believed was “meager demand” for the Model 3. Even Oppenheimer technical analyst Ari Wald noted that he does not recommend Tesla stock as “Buy,” even if the company could see a 40% upside in the future.
While reservations about Tesla’s performance this first quarter are understandable (Elon Musk himself noted that the company would probably not be profitable this quarter), concerns over the company’s capability to sell its vehicles might be overblown. Part of the current bear thesis against Tesla is the declining number of electric car deliveries in the United States, which could be explained by the company’s focus on Europe and China this Q1 2019.
As the final days of the first quarter trickle down, things appear to be settling down for Tesla. Apart from Jefferies’ recent vote of confidence, Elon Musk’s row with the SEC could also see a resolution within the next few weeks, with US District Judge Alison Nathan giving a date to hear oral arguments from the CEO’s legal team and the agency on April 4, 2019.
Tesla is going all-hands-on-deck to deliver as many vehicles as it can before the end of the month, as revealed in a leaked email from Elon Musk to the company’s employees. In the message, Musk urged Tesla’s workers to focus on delivering electric cars, with the CEO stating that the company should aim to deliver 30,000 vehicles in the final two weeks of March.
As of writing, Tesla shares are trading +1.59% at $272.04.
Disclosure: I have no ownership in shares of TSLA and have no plans to initiate any positions within 72 hours.