Tesla bulls tout lofty long-term price targets (NASDAQ:TSLA)

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A few vocal Tesla Motors (NASDAQ:TSLA) bulls are forwarding some lofty expectations for the automaker ahead of its earnings release.

Shares of the EV leader moved modestly higher on the open as the market anticipates earnings to update on both the quarter gone by and those upcoming. Yet, according to some prominent proponents, the long-term targets are the most appetizing for investors.

In a report released Sunday by the Texas-based hedge fund Worm Capital, Tesla (TSLA) should easily grow to justify its high multiple and will soon “dominate the S&P 500.” As such, the hedge fund’s Director of Research Eric Markowitz and Research Analyst Cameron Tierney, advised the current share price, hovering around $1,000, is still a bargain.

“Conventional Wall Street analysis consistently undervalues Tesla’s multiple business lines, its massive scale, its expanding margin profile, its leading revolution in complex manufacturing, its approach to real-world AI, its vertical integration, its software stack, and much more,” the report reads. “Our multi-year research effort into Tesla’s manufacturing capabilities and supply chain integrations suggest that Tesla is more than 6 years ahead of any competitor. This lead is expanding.”

The team explained that paradigm shifts in major industries are often most unkind to incumbents and underfunded upstarts. Tesla (TSLA), on the other hand, is cited as being in the ‘Goldilocks’ zone that should catapult it toward dominating the EV revolution.

“We believe Tesla (TSLA) shares could offer a 10x return by 2030 – and potentially much more,” the team concluded.

The very bullish take on Tesla (TSLA) is not the first from the firm, as the stock has been a top holding of the hedge fund for many years. Though it is worth noting that its lofty expectations, such as a $1000 target for the stock professed on Seeking Alpha four years ago have indeed come to fruition.

The firm’s rosy outlook on Tesla (TSLA) is perhaps only surpassed by uber-bull Cathie Wood of ARK Invest, who updated her own price target to $4,600 by 2026. In fact, in a bull case, Wood’s firm assigned a $5,800 price target to the stock in just four years.

“Although tuned to our expectations for 2026, we believe our Tesla model is methodologically conservative: we assume that Tesla’s stock will trade like a mature company rather than a high-growth one in 2026,” Ark analyst Tasha Keeney added in the price target update. “Using the existing assumptions in our model and extending them to 2027 results in a materially higher price target and compounded annual rate of return.”

To be sure, both of these bullish outlooks rely upon businesses that Tesla (TSLA) does not yet operate.

For example, the Ark report cites the “prospective robotaxi business line is a key driver, contributing 60% of expected value and more than half of expected EBITDA in 2026.” This business was famously promised to already have 1 million robotaxis on the road by 2020. Two years beyond that deadline there is not yet even one in operation.

Similarly, Worm Capital’s outlook includes an optimistic outlook on the Tesla (TSLA) Semi truck and hints at AI and the “Tesla Bot.” The Semi, much like robotaxis, was promised by 2020 and, in line with the robotaxis again, has yet to put rubber on the road. Meanwhile, the Tesla Bot has consisted of an actor dancing on stage. Tesla (TSLA) “Technoking” Elon Musk had originally forecast a prototype to be completed in 2022 before pushing that forecast to 2023 earlier this month.

Whether the long term targets set by bullish analysts are appropriate or if a modicum of skepticism is advisable remains an open question. The first step towards clarifying the trajectory is likely to be found this evening in the company’s earnings release, appropriately scheduled for 4/20.

Read more on the earnings expectations set for the company and its specific concerns in Shanghai.

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