This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Cramer: What's Really Driving Tesla?

Editor's Note: This article was originally published at 11:28 a.m. ET on Real Money on May 14. To see Jim Cramer's latest commentary as it's published, sign up for a free trial of Real Money.

NEW YORK ( Real Money) -- We've all heard of cars that can go from zero to 60 in four seconds or less. But how about a car company whose stock can go from $56 to $97 in four days? That's the curious case of Tesla Motors (TSLA - Get Report). Ever since this once-derided company posted a profitable quarter last week, the stock has been on one of the greatest tears I have ever seen.

When you own shares in a company, you always hope that the CEO cares about the stock. Most CEOs I deal with act as if the stock doesn't matter. The "I just pay attention to the business and the stock will take care of itself" attitude is the prevalent way of thinking. It drives me crazy when heavily incentivized CEOs talk that way because, frankly, how can they not care about the stock? Even billionaires care about their net worth.

Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, is not one of those hands-off-the-stock CEOs. The conference call after the recent Tesla quarter read like a recipe of how to move a stock higher. You show profitability when only a handful of analysts expect it, and you beat the high man, meaning the person actually looking for real earnings, putting up 12 cents when the most bullish analyst was looking for 4 cents. That allows for a monster guide up in estimates.

You increase the number of cars you are selling because demand is so strong. You make more money per car and increase the gross margin guidance. You talk about global demand being well in excess of what you can produce this year to create a multi-year product story. You offer cheaper financing terms because you want the car to be for the masses, not just for rich people, something that Henry Ford first thought of when he decided to make the Model T available to the masses. And, most importantly, you make a point that you do not need more financing. You have enough. So no stock deal has to occur.

As fabulous as all of these bits of data are for the stock, the last point -- no new financing -- may be the most important. That's because more than 40% of the stock is sold short, meaning that many hedge funds are betting against this company, hoping that the company would lose money and it would have to float a lot of stock. That would bust the tightness of the supply and make it easier to cover -- if one needed to cover at all.

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,773.64 -57.12 -0.32%
S&P 500 2,065.30 -10.51 -0.51%
NASDAQ 4,775.3580 -29.9330 -0.62%

Our Tweets

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs