Elon Musk’s Tesla Inc. briefly surpassed General Motors Co. to become America’s most valuable carmaker, eclipsing a company whose well-being was once viewed as interdependent with the nation’s.
A week after topping Ford Motor Co., Tesla climbed as much as 3.7 percent in early Monday trading, boosting its market capitalization to $51 billion. The company was valued at about $1.7 billion more than GM as of 9:35 a.m. in New York and the two jostled for the lead spot in subsequent trading.
Tesla has long been treated like a technology stock with investors betting on its ability to dominate a market for electric cars and energy storage. To those same investors, GM and Ford are headed for a slowdown in car sales that will erode profits.
“Tesla’s products have a captivating impact on consumers and shareholders alike; this advantage will be difficult to replicate,” Potter, the Piper Jaffray analyst, wrote in a report Monday. “Even if the Model 3 production launch goes badly, we think customers (and more importantly shareholders) will withhold judgment.”
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