As I wrote yesterday (see A stock’s ‘sex appeal’ plays big role in price), certain stocks trade on more than just reason and numbers alone. They trade on beliefs, ‘gut feelings’ and a desire for change in the world. They have a mixture of allure, great timing and, perhaps most importantly, a great story. Here are the five reasons why everyone loves the Tesla (TSLA) story:
1) Electricity is the future. No, our power grid isn’t ready to support 100 million Americans recharging their cars at night, but if we continue chucking solar panels on our roofs, that won’t matter. Electricity is cheap, it doesn’t pollute the earth, and it makes your car run quietly (like something off the Jetsons).
2) Tesla’s name is cool. Remind me to name my next company after a brilliant inventor who toiled in the shadows but eventually turned into a cult-hero with underdog street cred. Tesla’s like the Amazon.com of inventors while Edison’s like Walmart. You can’t undervalue a cool name. I think that’s why Hemp, Inc. (HEMP) is one of the more popular medical marijuana stocks right now.
3) Elon Musk has groupies. They say everything the guy touches turns to gold. I have to admit his resume is almost as good as mine. He co-founded Zip2, SpaceX and PayPal. He leads Tesla Motors and he tossed his idea for the Hyperloop onto the web and encouraged someone else to take it on… Oh yeah, he’s the chairman of SolarCity (SCTY), too.
4) Tesla’s cars are sexy. The Roadster turned electric cars from novelties into something lust-worthy. I don’t care if the thing’s powered by fish heads and spoiled milk, it’s one of the coolest looking cars I’ve ever seen. The Model S makes sedans seem cool, and the Model X has gull wings!
5) Tesla has moxie. Everything about the company is challenging the status quo. Its approach to power blindsided GM, Toyota and Ford. Its factories hardly need humans. It’s going to war with car dealership cartels by offering direct sales, and it’s trying to roll out charging stations and new consumer batteries.
Tesla’s ridiculously overvalued right now, but Muskovites don’t care. It’ll be interesting to see if Tesla can actually transform itself into a profitable company that warrants such enthusiasm. In the meantime, I’m content watching TSLA’s shares rocket to the moon from the safety of earth.