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Tesla (TSLA) rises as Q1 earnings leave Wall Street analysts “speechless”

Credit: Tesla

Tesla’s (NASDAQ:TSLA) first quarter 2022 earnings results blew expectations out of the water. The company posted total revenues of $18.76 billion with a gross profit of $5.46 billion and non-GAAP earnings per share of $3.22. Operating margins were an impressive 19.2% as well. 

With such results, Wall Street analysts have provided their takes on Tesla and its performance in the first quarter. Needless to say, both TSLA bulls and bears seem to be on the same page, at least with regards to the electric vehicle maker’s performance. New Street Research analyst Pierre Ferragu, for one, noted that he is “already speechless” after Tesla released its Q1 2022 results. 

Ferragu noted that he was particularly impressed with Tesla’s roughly 29.5% automotive gross profit margin in Q1. The analyst highlighted how well Tesla is faring against its competitors, which was evident in a chart shown by the company in its Q1 2022 Update Letter. The chart showed that Tesla had a big day for orders the day after the Super Bowl, which featured EV ads from rival carmakers. 

This suggests that Tesla had established itself as the EV authority to such a degree that it actually benefitted from competitors’ advertising. Ferragu has given TSLA a “Buy” rating and a price target of $1,580 per share. 

Wedbush analyst Dan Ives was on the same page, noting that Tesla’s Q1 2022 results were “Cinderella-like” with optimistic numbers that were earned during a “brutal supply chain backdrop.” Ives is quite focused on China and Tesla’s Giga Shanghai, which was closed for three weeks due to the country’s Covid lockdowns. Like Ferragu, Ives has an optimistic outlook for TSLA stock with a price target of $1,400 per share. 

Cowen analyst Jeffrey Osborne is not a Tesla bull with his price target of $790 per share, but even he stated that “we commend the execution” of the company in the first quarter. The analyst stated that he was impressed that Tesla is still looking to grow its delivery volumes by at least 50% this year despite supply chain difficulties. However, he noted that Tesla’s margins might be as good as they will get. 

“(We) are less enthusiastic about the stock at current valuation given likely peak gross margin,” Osborne noted. 

J.P. Morgan analyst Ryan Brinkman is a TSLA bear, but he also admitted that Tesla’s Q1 results were strong. Echoing a rather dated argument, Brinkman stated that part of Tesla’s earnings beat was partly due to higher-than-expected regulatory credit sales, which were listed at $679 million against the Street’s expectation of $312 million. 

Despite this, the J.P. Morgan analyst stated that high regulatory credit sales are only part of the reason behind Tesla’s strong Q1 results since the company’s numbers were also due to better-than-expected operating performance. As such, the Tesla bear raised his price target for TSLA from $330 to $395 per share.

Tesla investors seem to appreciate the company’s Q1 2022 results. As of writing, TSLA stock is trading up 9.75% at $1,072.52 per share. 

Disclaimer: I am long TSLA.

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Tesla (TSLA) rises as Q1 earnings leave Wall Street analysts “speechless”
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