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The Ratings Game: Tesla stock upgraded by Wedbush after ‘paradigm changer’ delivery numbers

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Wedbush Securities has upgraded its outlook for Tesla Inc., following stronger-than-expected quarterly deliveries.

On Sunday, Wedbush raised its price target for Tesla
TSLA,
-0.93%
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to $1,000 a share from $950, with a long-term bull-case price of $1,300 a share. Tesla shares closed Thursday at $661.75 (markets were closed Friday). In premarket for Monday, shares were up nearly 8%.

Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives also changed his rating from hold to outperform. “In our opinion the 1Q delivery numbers released on Friday was a paradigm changer,” he said in a note.

On Friday, Tesla reported first-quarter deliveries, its proxy for sales, totaling 184,800 vehicles, blowing past the FactSet consensus of 168,000. The Silicon Valley electric-vehicle maker said it produced just over 180,000 vehicles in the period in what Ives called a “drop the mic” number.

“We now believe Tesla could exceed 850k deliveries for the year with 900k a stretch goal, despite the chip shortage and various supply chain issues lingering across the auto sector,” Ives said Sunday. He added “eye popping delivery numbers coming out of China cannot be ignored with the trajectory on pace to represent ~40% of deliveries for Musk & Co. by 2022.”

Ives and his team also see Tesla’s profitability significantly improving over the next three to four years.

Tesla shares are down 6.2% year to date, but have skyrocketed 628% over the past 12 months.

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