Tesla stock slides on first day in S&P 500

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Tesla’s stock price lost some charge in its S&P 500 debut — but Elon Musk’s electric-car colossus is nowhere near out of juice, analysts say.

Shares in the trailblazing automaker slid as much as 6.3 percent to $651.20 on Monday, dragging down the benchmark index amid concerns about a dangerous new coronavirus strain in the UK. The stock was off about 4.3 percent at $664.97 as of 1:15 p.m.

But Tesla’s staggering run is far from over because its addition to the S&P gives it some Wall Street cred that may lead previously skeptical investors to buy up shares, according to analysts.

“S&P 500 inclusion is a major validation point for Tesla as well as for Musk, showing that the red ink is in the rearview mirror,” Wedbush Securities analyst Daniel Ives told The Post.

Monday’s drop is “a knee-jerk reaction, but ultimately the path continues to look higher for Tesla if they execute at the pace we’ve seen the last six to nine months,” he added.

Tesla’s share price surged about 70 percent in the weeks after the mid-November announcement that it would become the most valuable company ever added to the index.

The stock closed at a record high of $695 on Friday as investment funds that track the S&P snapped up about $90 billion worth of Tesla shares to reflect the index’s makeup.

Tesla is known for its volatile trading — and it could take the S&P along for the ride now that it’s part of the benchmark basket of US-listed stocks. The Silicon Valley automaker joined the index with a weight of 1.69 percent, so a change of $11.11 in the share price will move the S&P up or down by one point, according to Reuters.

But with those big price swings come the potential for big gains — putting pressure on large investors to add Tesla to their portfolios even if they’ve avoided it in the past, according to David Keller, chief market strategist at StockCharts.com.

“You can’t just write Tesla off as a non-factor and focus on the names you know,” Keller told The Post. “You have to consider how you’re going to be allocated to one of the largest names in the space, a name that has a lot of potential for movement. If a stock like that keeps moving into next year, you’re going to have a lot of trouble outperforming the S&P without a name like Tesla.”

“You sort of have to think of Tesla as one of the FAANG names now,” Keller added, referring to the quintet of strong Big Tech stocks comprising Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix and Google.

Tesla still has plenty of naysayers on Wall Street with bearish ratings from analysts at 13 firms including Barclays, Bernstein and JPMorgan, which predicts it will plunge to $90, according to Bloomberg data.

But Keller contends the company’s addition to the S&P is “sort of that nail in the coffin to the bearish argument.”

“The company continues to prove the doubters wrong, and in the [electric vehicle] market it’s Tesla’s world and everyone else is paying rent at this point,” Ives said.

With Post wires

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