Tesla's biggest bull: Wall Street skepticism is 'the best wall of worry' I've experienced

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Shares of Tesla have risen about 90% year to date. Cathie Wood, CEO of ARK Invest, has a $7,000 price target on Tesla and is the biggest bull on Wall Street. She joins "Squawk Box" to discuss.

Ark Invest CEO and Tesla bull Cathie Wood said Tuesday that she wasn’t concerned over Wall Street skepticism about the electric-auto maker, saying demand from China and falling battery costs would drive the stock higher.

Wood said earlier this month that she believed the stock could hit $7,000 per share during the next five years. The name has risen about 100% so far this year, peaking at more than $960 per share.

Tesla’s rapid rise has left Wall Street analysts wary, with many setting price targets below where the shares currently trade. According to FactSet, 45% of analysts have a sell rating, but Wood said the skepticism doesn’t change her opinion of the company.

“What we have here is a wonderful wall of worry. The best wall of worry I’ve ever experienced in my career with a stock or with the market,” Wood said on CNBC’s “Squawk Box.”

Falling battery costs will drive further adoption of electric vehicles, Wood said, citing a Reuters report that Tesla was in talks with Chinese company CATL to use noncobalt batteries at its Shanghai factory. Electric vehicles accounted for about 2% of global auto sales last year, according to a note from Morgan Stanley’s Adam Jonas.

“We are now seeing, and more people now believe, that battery costs are falling at such a rapid rate, that within two years the average electric vehicle from just a sticker price point of view, will drop below the average combustion engine car in price,” Wood said.

Tesla’s climb has been a wild ride in 2020. After beginning the year at around $420 per share, the name spiked to $968 per share in early February before falling back a little to around $800 recently.

Wood credited the stock’s success this year to strong profit numbers and the faster-than-expected opening of Tesla’s factory in Shanghai. She said she would not be surprised if Tesla opened another factory in China fairly soon.

The stock rose 7.3% on Tuesday after getting a pair of price target raises from analysts at Morgan Stanley and Bernstein. Wood said on Twitter last week that the secondary offering from the automaker supported the bull thesis.

Wood said that Ark Invest does sell shares of Tesla periodically because it does not want to hold more than 10% of its portfolio in one stock.

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