This article originally appeared at 07:50 ET on Real Money on May 4, our premium site for active traders. Click here to get great columns like this from Brian Sozzi and other writers even earlier in the trading day.
Any sane investor listening to Tesla's (TSLA - Get Report) earnings call on Wednesday evening had to be like "huh, this is why I have been buying the stock like a mad person over the past three months."
At least that's what this incredibly rational editor/former stock analyst came away thinking. What is now the world's most highly valued automaker gave investors a host of reasons to book profits, head for the hills and ponder nibbling at some beat-up shares of Ford (F - Get Report) and General Motors (GM - Get Report) .
A couple of concerns include:
Tesla shared zero specifics on how it would magically ramp up producing 5,000 Model 3 autos a week "some time" this year and then to another 10,000 a week "some time" in 2018. Oddly, analysts didn't press Elon Musk on this, but it's important. Tesla shares trade on future production hope, because earnings are non-existent. If these goals can't be met, then the stock deserves to crash hard. Seeing as details were absent, it's time to truly ponder if Tesla could reach its targets. The company's track record has been inconsistent, at best.
Wrote Oppenheimer analysts on Thursday, "In reiterating guidance for Model 3 deliveries, Tesla has an exceptionally large volume of work to do in upcoming months to reach its target of 5,000 vehicles/week by the end of 2017."
Tesla could be screwing itself by anti-selling its cars. No test drives? No marketing? Are you kidding here? The seemingly ridiculous decision looks like it's creating some confusion among would-be Tesla buyers between the Model S and the coming Model 3. People are telling the company they want to be shown the differences, or else they won't part with their cash. The way Tesla is valued, it needs all the consumer cash it could garner (note: customer deposits have declined for two straight quarters).
Tesla will need another cash infusion, probably sooner than the market expects. Morgan Stanley recently estimated that Tesla could burn through $3 billion in cash over the next three years. On the earnings call, Musk seemed pretty open to the notion of diluting shareholders to grow the company at a faster pace. This isn't something one wants to hear from a company trading more on hope than bottom-line profits.
Shares fell 5 percent to $295.46 in trading on Thursday.
Disclosure: gas-guzzling muscle car fan for life.
Read This Or Lose Out
Because we all need a mental release: Fun post by the folks at Insider, who took a look at what well-known fast food chains look like today compared to in the past. Count me as one that misses the old school look of Dunkin' Donuts (now owned by Dunkin' Brands Group (DNKN - Get Report) ).
More mindless fun: Hey, it has been a long week, so it's easy to appreciate a great, well-timed, photoshopped pic on Twitter. Below is New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge's head on light-hitting (and tiny) teammate's Ronald Torreyes' body. This one cracked me up.
The power of the Apple Watch: Great interview by TheStreet's Jim Cramer with Apple's (AAPL - Get Report) CEO Tim Cook. One fun fact from the interview: the Apple Watch allegedly helped Cook drop 30 pounds. Based on my own personal experience wearing the watch since it came out, it's certainly a motivating factor in spin class.
That said, it has fallen incredibly short on many other fronts. But damn, is Cook buff.
The price of a hamburger this Memorial Day weekend will probably be higher: Beef prices have surged this week, TheStreet reports, as traders bank on unusually strong demand. Also fueling the surge is a seasonally late snow storm on the Great Plains last weekend, which may have killed some cattle.
OK, Subway: The sub maker is about five years late to the food mashup game with its newest product: the Frito pie. And it's not even a cool mashup worth taking photos of for Instagram, it just looks some chili in a bowl piled with Fritos.
Check out my boy Daym Drops' food review below.
Almost forgot this on Tesla: As Car Scoops reminds us all, Musk recently said fully autonomous cars (aka "Level 5' cars) will be in production during 2019. Tesla has said that it plans to complete a trip from Los Angeles to New York without any human intervention by the end of 2017.
The BMW executive I recently interviewed (below video) was equally bullish on the fully autonomous car timeline.
Mental note: The first move in shares of Apple, Facebook (FB - Get Report) and Tesla in response to their earnings week was lower. Might want to keep an eye on that red-hot Nasdaq Composite for signs of a short-term pullback...
Read More of TheStreet's Top Stories:
- Buffett: Apple Worth Buying Because 'People Want the Product' No Matter the Price
- Coach Will Spend $2.4 Billion to Buy Rival Kate Spade - Here's Why
- Buffett: I Missed the Boat on Amazon, Google
- You Must Start Investing Now Because the Dow May Hit 100,000 By 2030
- 5 Things You Must Know Before the Market Opens Monday
Editor's Pick: Originally published May 4.