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Tesla Gains As Cathie Wood, ARK Invest Add $170 Million In Shares Amid Sell-Off

Tesla remains in negative territory for the year, and one of the most bet-against stocks on Wall Street. But last year's star fund manager, Cathie Wood, continues to have faith in the clean-energy carmaker.

Tesla Inc.  (TSLA) - Get Tesla Inc. Report jumped higher Wednesday following reports that Cathie Wood's Ark Invest funds bought more than $170 million shares in the clean-energy carmaker during yesterday's billion dollar sell-off.

Wood, who runs the $60 billion ARK Invest stable of exchange traded funds, added share to the ARK Autonomous Technology & Robotics ETF  (ARKQ) - Get ARK Autonomous Technology & Robotics ETF Report, the ARK Next Generation Internet ETF  (ARKW) - Get ARK Next Generation Internet ETF Report and the flagship ARK Innovation Fund  (ARKK) - Get ARK Innovation ETF Report as Tesla tumbled to $619 per share in yesterday's sell-off, the lowest since December 22.

The moves come as ARK, one of the star performers of last year's tech stocks 'melt-up', suffered its biggest two-day declines since September, triggering outflow of around $465 million, according to Bloomberg data and reporting. 

Tesla shares were marked 3% higher in early trading Wednesday, against a 0.2% decline for the S&P 500, to change hands at $722.50, a move that still leaves the stock in negative territory for the year. 

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Tesla's 13% drop during the worst of yesterday's sell-off was triggered, at least in part, by the sharp decline in bitcoin prices, which fell below the $45,000 mark in volatile trading linked to the New York Attorney General's decision to shut down in-state trading in Tether and the entire Bitfinex digital currency exchange. 

Tesla, which unveiled the purchase of $1.5 billion worth of bitcoin earlier this month, must be held as a so-called 'intangible' asset on its corporate balance sheet. That means that, like the value of "goodwill", it can't be increased. However, it can be marked down when bitcoin prices decline, leaving Tesla's stock price at least partly-linked to bitcoin fluctuations. 

Short-selling interest in Tesla remains robust, as well, at $36.9 billion -- or 6.73% of the outstanding float in play. Tesla shorts are, in fact, up $1.18 billion on the year, according to data from S3 Partners, with $1.08 billion of that gain coming from yesterday' action alone.