Tesla's stock is nearing a key line in the sand
- Tesla shares fell by as much as 4% on Thursday after the electric-car maker reported a wider-than-expected first-quarter loss.
- The stock is holding near $250 a share, a price long seen as an important support level.
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As the stock fell by as much as 4% - to a six-month low - in the wake of disappointing quarterly earnings results, shares sliced below the $250 level, widely seen among technical analysts as a significant area of support over the last two years. By early Thursday afternoon, the stock had traded in a range between $248.41 and $258.47 a share.One observer who's highlighted the importance of this particular level is Matt Maley, an equity strategist at the firm Miller Tabak.
"We're a little surprised that this is not getting more attention today... because this is a well-known support level around the street," Maley wrote in a note to clients out Thursday morning.
He said the stock would have to close below $250 a share, something it hasn't done since December 2016, in order to signal that shares could fall significantly further from here. The stock has bounced several times off of that level, and short-sellers "have gotten burned many times in this stock," but a close below may signal further downside.
"It almost seems like a situation where people see it as the boy who cried wolf," Maley wrote. "Thus nobody wants to say anything about the technical aspects of the stock... unless or until it finally does fall below that key support level in a compelling manner."
He added: "In other words, maybe Mr. Musk can pull a rabbit out of a hat once again... but there's no question that the stock is sitting at a very important technical level."To be sure, Wall Street on the whole still thinks shares are headed higher. The average Wall Street analyst's price target of $296, per data compiled by Bloomberg, implies a 19% rally from Thursday's session lows.
Tesla was down 25% this year, including Thursday's drop.
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