Tesla Reports Wider Loss For Q2

Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) announced its second-quarter earnings Wednesday. Tesla reported losing $401.4 million in the quarter that ended June 30, compared with a loss of $293.2 million in the same quarter of last year. Its net loss grew 15 percent to $336 million in the period.

Its adjusted loss of $1.33 per share beat Wall Street’s forecast of a $1.88 loss per share, according to analysts polled by FactSet. Tesla said total revenue for the quarter was $2.79 billion, more than double the $1.27 billion it recorded in the comparable period last year and beating Wall Street’s forecast of $2.5 billion.

The company reported overall growth in its operations. Tesla CEO Elon Musk says the company was on track in many areas, including batteries, solar panels, and maintaining sales of its existing vehicles. Tesla has consistently lost money because of heavy spending on research, product development and equipment for its factories.

Revenue from the company’s auto operations was $2.29 billion, compared with $1.18 billion a year earlier. Tesla posted stronger sales of the Model S and the Model X. Sales of the two models in the United States totaled 3,100 vehicles in July. Overall sales for the first seven months of the year increased 35 percent over the same period in 2016.

The company continued to invest in factories to accommodate its first mass-market vehicle, the Model 3. The company wants to be able to make 10,000 Model 3s per week by next year. Tesla spent $1 billion in the second quarter preparing for the Model 3’s arrival. The company ended the quarter with $3 billion in cash.

Tesla faces challenges in introducing the Model 3. Interest in the new vehicle has been huge since the company began taking deposits on it more than a year ago. The first Model 3s to be built will be the more expensive variations equipped with longer-range battery packs and various autopilot features. Production of the base-price version will begin later.

Some analysts have questioned whether the company can meet its aggressive manufacturing targets. Musk said Tesla may experience some fluctuations in production rates, but “people should have zero concerns.” Musk said there’s always a risk of machines breaking down or suppliers not coming through, but he doesn’t expect significant changes to that plan. Tesla delivered the first 30 Model 3s to employees last week.

On a conference call with analysts and media, Musk said, “This is maybe the best I’ve ever felt about Tesla, to be frank.” The company opened 29 new stores and service centers and is planning to double the number of fast-charging Supercharger outlets this year to 10,000 worldwide. Tesla is reportedly starting to look at locations for battery factories in China and Europe, although most of its battery production will probably remain in the United States. Tesla shares were up more than 7 percent in extended trading.

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