Elon, what are you doing?
The feeling here in San Francisco, the tech capital of the U.S., on Tesla (TSLA) CEO Elon Musk is that he has kind of gone off the deep end. That's the sense I've gotten from talking to folks the past few days while in town -- note these are people very plugged into the tech scene and what's happening in Silicon Valley. I can't say I disagree with them -- it's clear that Musk is under immense stress and it may be taking a toll. The fact this burnout is playing out on social media is a tremendous risk to Tesla shareholders who have to deal with headline risk from Musk and fundamental issues at the electric carmaker.
In his latest Twitter tirade, Musk attacked journalists who apparently are nothing more than click-driven machines. Said machines will create salacious fake news to get bonuses and if their stories aren't read editors simply cut them loose. Musk then promised to create a website that tracks the authenticity of the reporting done by reporters. My response to Musk on Twitter: "My man, what are you talking about? That's not journalism." I eagerly await Elon's reply.
Some data suggested he will reply very soon. According to the Tesla experts on Twitter @Teslacharts, Musk is now up to tweeting eight times a day, on average. That's up markedly from the mid-four range Musk averaged for most of 2017. With the increasing number of tweets this month, Musk's favorite stock -- Tesla -- has gone the other way. Shares are down 1.6% month to date, trailing the Dow Jones Industrial Average's 3.6% gain. Elon, stop tweeting and focus on attracting more executives. The fact Tesla only has two members to its executive management team besides Musk is troubling.
Watch This Market Carefully
Don't get tricked into thinking calm has returned to this market after a decent reversal off the session lows on Wednesday. The news flow is such that the market could sell off into the long holiday weekend. First, news that broke late Wednesday on Donald Trump pressing for tariffs on imported cars and trucks stands to unwind the goodwill the market built up on Monday in reaction to China auto tariff news. Secondly, Russian President Vladimir Putin, French President Emmanuel Macron and Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will participate on a panel at the St. Petersburg Forum on Friday. Talk about potential headline risk to stocks. And finally, the market has shown its willingness to react to negative comments and tweets from Trump this week -- who knows what's coming from him over the holiday weekend? All in all, respect the potential for a sharp selloff. Here are 12 good stock ideas from TheStreet's top editors that can withstand a volatile market.
Stats of the Day
The robots are coming, and fast. There could be 14,000 robo-taxis (autonomous taxis) on the road by 2020, with that number growing to 2.4 million by 2025, estimated RBC Capital Markets in a new batch of research. By 2020, there may be 31 million plus robo-taxis on the road making up about 30% of total taxi units outstanding. Naturally, with the rise in autonomous driving the LiDAR (key industry technology) market stands to explode. Said RBC: "We still see the automotive LiDAR market growing at a 45% compound annual growth rate through 2025 to ~$7bn driven by uptake of the sensor on robo-taxis." Key players in the LiDAR market to begin researching include ON Semiconductor (ON) , Cypress Semiconductor (CY) and Autoliv (ALV) .