After a brief trip south of $200 a share, Tesla Motors Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA) stock has moved solidly above that level again Tuesday as markets continue to recover from last week’s losses. The upward movement in the electric car maker’s stock hasn’t generated a lot of enthusiasm yet, with only about a third of the stock’s daily average of around 9 million shares traded by the noon hour.
There is really nothing significant in the way of news on the company. It struck an agreement with Alibaba that will enable Chinese buyers to pay online. That’s nice, but given that the tariff the government charges Tesla Model S buyers raises the price for an 85-kWh version of the car to $118,000, the number of buyers who are likely to be making payments is probably pretty small.
We noted over the weekend that the some staffers at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) have come down on Tesla’s side in the company’s dispute with states over its direct sales model. There is not a lot the FTC can actually do, absent congressional action, but the agency’s support is a (small) plus for Tesla.
Some momentum stocks also traded higher Tuesday, something they couldn’t quite manage Monday, and that also is giving Tesla a little help.
Tesla is scheduled to report first-quarter earnings next Wednesday, May 7, and analysts are looking for earnings per share of $0.12 on revenues of $700.22 million. The earnings estimate is flat with the year-ago first quarter, while the revenue estimate is about 25% higher.
Shares of Tesla traded up about 3.2% Monday afternoon, at $204.80 in a 52-week range of $53.00 to $265.00.