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Tesla rises 8% as breakneck rally enters 11th day and leaves famous investors split

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Elon Musk
Tesla CEO Elon Musk.

Tesla climbed as much as 8.4% on Friday, marking the 11th straight day of gains as the automaker’s massive rally continues into the new year.The gains followed a similarly large jump on Thursday that established CEO Elon Musk as the world’s wealthiest person and boosted the company’s market cap past Facebook’s.The billionaire investor Chamath Palihapitiya said Thursday that Tesla’s market cap stood to triple from its already lofty levels. The “Big Short” investor Michael Burry took an opposing stance, telling Tesla bulls in a tweet on Thursday that they should enjoy the rally “while it lasts.”Watch Tesla trade live here.

The rally that’s made Elon Musk the wealthiest person in the world and exceeded nearly all Wall Street forecasts continued on Friday as investors piled further into Tesla to close out the week.

The automaker climbed as much as 8.4%, marking the 11th consecutive day of gains for the stock. Tesla shares sit about 25% higher year-to-date, already mirroring the massive returns throughout 2020.

The climb followed a similarly large leap on Thursday in which Tesla overtook Facebook to become the S&P 500’s fifth-most-valuable constituent. About 51.5 million shares traded hands, exceeding the stock’s 10-day average volume of 38.1 million shares.

Tesla’s momentum and back-to-back record highs have divided some of the world’s most famous investors. In a CNBC appearance on Thursday, the billionaire venture capitalist Chamath Palihapitiya praised the stock’s gains and told investors it could be worth three times its already lofty valuation.

“Don’t sell a share,” he added.

Read more: A growth-fund manager who’s beaten 96% of his peers over the past 5 years shares 6 stocks he sees ‘dominating their space’ for the next 5 to 10 years – including 2 he thinks could grow 100%

Michael Burry, the hedge-fund manager whose bet against the housing market was depicted in “The Big Short,” aired a contrasting opinion on Thursday night. The investor tweeted that, like his famous 2008 gambit, his short position in Tesla stood to print huge gains.

“Well, my last Big Short got bigger and bigger and BIGGER too,” he said, adding that bullish investors should “enjoy it while it lasts.”

Wall Street analysts, on the other hand, have increasingly abandoned bearish outlooks and turned more optimistic toward Tesla. Morgan Stanley lifted its price target for the automaker to $810 on Tuesday, saying strong demand and new factories would keep Tesla far ahead of competitors in the electric-vehicle sector.

Read more: BANK OF AMERICA: Buy these 8 US stocks poised to soar in the first quarter of 2021- and avoid these 2 at all costs

RBC Capital gave up on its own bearish bet on Thursday, boosting its target to $700 from $339 and upgrading Tesla to “sector perform” from “underperform.” The firm’s analysts said they didn’t expect Tesla to leverage its soaring stock price to raise funds last year.

“There is no graceful way to put this other than to say we got TSLA’s stock completely wrong,” RBC said.

Tesla traded at $881.78 as of 11:33 a.m. ET on Friday. The company has 21 “buy” ratings, 43 “hold” ratings, and 20 “sell” ratings from analysts.

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