Tesla Shares Poised For Record; 'More Than a Car Company,' Morgan Stanley Says

By Claudia Assis Markets MarketWatch Pulse

Tesla Inc. on Wednesday traded as high as $339.40 intraday, putting it on track to close at another record after hitting that milestone on Tuesday, when it closed at $335.10. Analysts at Morgan Stanley said in a note more investors viewed Tesla as the "nexus of shared, autonomous and electric transportation" rather than just as a car company. "The market's appreciation of applied (artificial intelligence) in real world driving scenarios/transportation has evolved significantly over the past 12 months and Tesla is part of a much broader discussion at all levels," the analysts said. Tesla has joined the likes of Amazon.com Inc. , Apple Inc. , and Alphabet Inc. as part of the discussions about machine learning and a multi-trillion dollar transportation market, yet it is valued at a fraction of these three companies, they said. The analysts also said Tesla and its stakeholders will have to ask whether it is "better off disrupting transport on a stand-alone basis or whether it could extract even greater value ... as part of a larger entity or consortium." Morgan Stanley in May downgraded Tesla to its equivalent of neutral and cut its price target on the shares to $305.

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