Elon Musk’s Tesla reports earnings: What Wall Street is watching

'We are expecting good news from Tesla'

Tesla Inc. will report a record quarterly profit when it releases first-quarter results after Monday’s closing bell, analysts say. 

The Palo Alto, California-based electric-vehicle maker is expected to earn an adjusted 79 cents per share on sales of $10.29 billion, according to Wall Street analysts surveyed by Refinitiv. Tesla posted earned an adjusted 23 cents per share on $5.99 billion of revenue in the year-ago period. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
TSLA TESLA, INC. 672.37 +8.83 +1.33%

"We are expecting good news from Tesla," wrote Dan Ives, analyst at Wedbush Securities. He added that Wall Street is "laser focused on gauging the annual delivery trajectory for 2021."

Tesla earlier this month reported a record 184,400 vehicles were delivered during the first three months of year, navigating through the chip shortage that has plagued a number of automakers. Automakers have been forced to idle production at a number of plants this year due to the supply-chain issues caused by COVID-19. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
GM GENERAL MOTORS CO. 58.94 +0.29 +0.49%
F FORD MOTOR CO. 11.80 +0.06 +0.51%
FCAU n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.

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Goldman Sachs analysts led by Mark Delaney project Tesla will deliver 850,000 vehicles in 2021 which will be weighted to the second half of the year due supply-chain problems not only caused by the chip shortage but also winter storms in Texas and other southern states, a fire at one of its plans and the Suez Canal blockage. 

Ives, who called the delivery numbers "eye-popping," agrees. He thinks Tesla will deliver 850,000 vehicles this year and said the company could even stretch to reach 900,000 deliveries. 

Analysts hope to learn more about how Tesla plans to expand production amid the global supply-chain issues and how the ramp-up of its gigafactories in Shanghai, Berlin and Austin are progressing. Other areas of interest include updates for self-driving software, internal battery development and product rollouts including Tesla Semi and the Cybertruck. 

Tesla shares have cooled down following their red-hot 2020. They were up 3.4% this year through Friday after surging 743% last year. 

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While Ives and the team at Goldman Sachs are bullish on Tesla, with price targets of $1,000 and $835, respectively, J.P. Morgan analysts have valuation concerns and a $155 target.

Tesla’s valuation appears to "insufficiently incorporate what is likely to be greatly intensified competition in the market for battery electric vehicles and leaves little room for less than perfect execution," wrote J.P. Morgan analysts led by Ryan Brinkman.