Musk defends cutting off analysts during conference call

  • Musk defends cutting off analysts during conference call

Musk defends cutting off analysts during conference call

With his pointed comments on social media, Musk is doubling down on the defiant attitude he displayed on Wednesday's earnings call - one that infuriated analysts across Wall Street.

"I should have answered their questions, live", Musk tweeted a day later. This means that some are betting Tesla's shares will fall, and they stand to gain if the share price drops.

Both analysts snubbed by Musk - RBC Capital Markets' Joseph Spak and Bernstein's Toni Sacconaghi - have a "hold" or equivalent rating on Tesla shares, rather than a "sell" rating. After fielding more than a dozen questions from Russell, Musk ended the conversation by thanking him.

On Wednesday's conference call following Tesla's results, Spak asked a question related to reservations of the Model 3 sedan and Sacconaghi asked a question on the company's capital requirement. Tesla shares sank during the unusual post-earnings call, taking billions off the company's market value.

Tesla's stock closed Thursday at $284.45 per share. On Twitter, he alluded to Wall Street analysts he claims are "trying to justify their Tesla short thesis", a reference to investors who bet against a company's stock.

"We're going to YouTube", the CEO said, turning to questions from users of the video sharing site.

"I'm not here to convince you to buy our stock", Musk said.

Levy added that although Tesla management should be "more disciplined publicly", the key to the stock is whether Tesla can ramp up production of the Model 3, its mass-market electric auto. Perhaps by the time Tesla needs more money, Musk's antics will be forgotten, or at least accepted as Elon being Elon. While Musk acknowledged he erred by ignoring questions, he also reinforced his criticism of the analysts. At one point, the CEO lamented that "boring questions are not cool", while also mentioning "barnacles, flufferbots, and bonehead bears".

However, his justification for calling out the other analyst speaks to how much work Tesla still has in front of it. Musk argues it would be impossible to fulfill existing Model 3 orders even if production goals are met, due to high demand. For another query, concerning demand for the Model 3, he points to the more than 400,000 vehicle reservations still waiting to be filled.

"Oh and uh short burn of the century coming soon". "Flamethrowers should arrive just in time".