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Tesla shares gain as Baird Equity adds stock to ‘best ideas’ list


(Reuters) – Electric-vehicle maker Tesla’s shares rose 4.5% on Monday, snapping a six-session losing streak, after brokerage Baird Equity Research added the stock to its “best ideas” list.

The brokerage said price cuts and their impact on margins will drive the narrative in the second half of the year but other potential catalysts for the stock include the launch of Cybertruck, wider adoption of Full Self-Driving and expansion into new markets.

Tesla’s shares have risen about 85% so far this year on the back of growing sales despite a margin squeeze and hopes of wider adoption of its autonomous driving software.

Bearish investors will point to lower production, said Baird, but added Tesla was still on pace to achieve its production forecast of 1.8 million vehicles this year.

Tesla sparked a price war earlier this year and last week slashed prices of three models in China. It also launched a cheaper version of the Model S sedan and Model X SUV on Aug. 14 as it looks to stoke demand and grab a larger share of the market.

The world’s most valuable automaker’s shares have a forward price-to-earnings multiple, a widely used benchmark to value stocks, of 50.15, compared to 26.58 for Apple and 6.14 for Ford Motor, making it pricier.

The brokerage also said sentiment for electric pickup truck maker Rivian Automotive’s stock was improving, adding that cost improvements have begun to materialize as it brings production of key components in-house.

(Reporting by Akash Sriram and Jaspreet Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri)

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