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  • The final cut of TMC Podcast #34 is available now with topics timestamped. We covered Tesla's rollercoaster prices, Toyota pushing junk science, Mike's new Model 3, Optimizing track mode for snow driving, FSD V11 apparently coming by the end of this week, and more. You can watch and check out the chat replay on YouTube.

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  1. M

    The coming Tesla cash cow and the short burn of the century

    The screenshot you linked shows holdings at the end of March. On March 27, Moody's downgraded Tesla (which wouldn't have yet been factored in to institution holdings). Since then... Tesla missed its Q1 model 3 production target. The Mountain View crash and investigation started. The head of...
  2. M

    The coming Tesla cash cow and the short burn of the century

    Well, I think that a lot of those people might want their deposit returned as they can't wait for another car. Or, as they get closer to purchase, do more research and find things aren't what they expected. A lot of them might also be waiting for the $27,500 car (35k minus the tax credit), which...
  3. M

    The coming Tesla cash cow and the short burn of the century

    We have no idea how many of those 450,000 people will actually convert to a Tesla owner. Elon Musk ignored the question about this on the most recent conference call.
  4. M

    Hi, I’m a short seller

    SpaceX is a private company with mostly illiquid shares and capital markets that we can't access. Why would we spend time thinking about SpaceX?
  5. M

    The coming Tesla cash cow and the short burn of the century

    Major assumptions in OP's model: Tesla has a sustainable 5k/week demand for the Model 3 and won't have to invest in marketing. I think this is a pretty weak assumption. Tesla still hasn't given us any idea of conversion or take rates for the Model 3. It seems a little farfetched that 65,000...
  6. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Is coordinating and measuring the impact of Twitter "campaigns" really worth discussion in an investor forum? The idea that there's some "coordinated campaign" on either side is ridiculous (including Elon's participation). We're earnest shorts. I own January put options. I'm here posting to...
  7. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Anyone want to take a stab at explaining these two oddities? TeslaCharts on Twitter X and S quarterly deliveries are almost perfectly correlated, and there's 300M of revenue coming from somewhere that's not a major market.
  8. M

    TSLA Market Action: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Hrm, lots of questions: 1) Can you post a link to the actual story? Instead of screenshots? Here is the link vincent posted on twitter. 2) Seems weird timing. Wouldn't this imply that Elon just violated insider trading laws in textbook fashion? He bought 10M worth of shares today with the...
  9. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Erm, I'll defend and say the only "big ticket item" I missed on was Elon's backing down from Q3/Q4 profitability. And I'm still stunned that happened. I also missed on cash, though I still need to go through and figure out the relationships between cash and customer deposits (is Tesla using...
  10. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Tried posting it in the other thread (still needs moderator approval), but reposting here... They delayed an 82.5M debt payment from February to August They have 30% of all cash overseas. They have -2.2B net working capital Their accounts payable (2.6B) is almost larger than their cash position...
  11. M

    TSLA Market Action: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    You mean the one that's now over a month behind schedule? The one that was targeting 2500/week from March 25 - 31 (and still hasn't hit that target)? The one that still has 2.35B CapEx planned for this year, despite a negative 2.2B working capital? The one that was promised to be sold for 35k...
  12. M

    TSLA Market Action: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    10-Q reveals Tesla's liquidity position even worse than expected... 882.5M in cash overseas (China, Europe, Norway). Drops down to 1783M in cash in the US, only 800M when you take out customer deposits. Accounts payable is 1.8B. Cracking down on contractors. Imposing harsh restrictions on...
  13. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    It's been fun - best of luck.
  14. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Uhhh, yes? Musk has promised profitability and cash flow positive multiple times in the past. He's sworn off capital multiple times in the past. Read the shareholder lawsuit. He promised 10k Model 3s in December despite being told by his team that it wasn't possible. That tweet from last July...
  15. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Honestly, the short thesis is stronger than ever. I'd love someone to actually engage on some of these topics rather than dismiss it. I am considering shorting more. Tesla's cash position continues to deteriorate: -2.2B in working capital 2.4B CapEx planned this year 2.7B in cash It sure looks...
  16. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    I'm not afraid, because the analysts and institutional holders aren't reading this board. They were listening to that call. They heard Elon Musk decline to answer the two most important questions, and they heard him sound pretty dejected and disconnected. The two questions Musk brushed aside...
  17. M

    TSLA Market Action: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    The analysts who asked those questions are not going to ignore the answers. Both of them have large positions in Tesla that they could possibly sell. Also, this ignores that Elon's compensation is tied to the stock price. He's heavily incentivized to **** over the shorts. With both of these...
  18. M

    TSLA Market Action: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Alright bulls. I have some questions for you after that call and how you interpret specific events. Setting aside Musk's tone and candor, what I did find very interesting was the questions he chose to ignore. In many ways, the questions he ignored are the most terrifying questions for a short...
  19. M

    TSLA Market Action: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    It's also the questions he chose to deliberately ignore: Can you give us a Model 3 production timeline past July? What percent of Model 3 reservations convert to owners?
  20. M

    TSLA Market Action: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    I cannot believe this call... This guy is Chairman and CEO of a 50B+ company. He's taken like 7-8 questions from a YouTuber? While scolding press and real investors?
  21. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    No but might rebalance into some riskier/lower strike options. On the call, Elon just said they're doing an organizational restructure this month? And they're at 3000 "peak hour" production? Long way from 5k/week in 2 months. And with no info on the Semi / Model Y / Roadster / Full Self...
  22. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Short perspective on the Q1 letter: Not a single mention of the Semi, Roadster, Model Y, or Full Self Driving in the Q1 letter. Are these projects on hold? 2018 CapEx forecast lowered, as expected. This, combined with 24/7 production, are both strong evidence of Tesla's cash crunch. 2.35B of...
  23. M

    q1 2018 earnings estimates

    Not a single mention of the Roadster, Semi, or Model Y. Autopilot got a tiny mention (no talk of full self driving, or the cross-country trip). I guess these projects are on hold? Down to 1.6B cash minus customer deposits. CapEx forecast lowered from 3.5B to 3B (they spent 650M, so 2.35B to...
  24. M

    TSLA Market Action: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Why? Elon said they won't need to raise money, so why should the stock price matter? Instead of making long-term deals, don't you think the best thing for Tesla would be to just focus on executing? The short nightmare is if Tesla can get to Model 3 production to 10k/week without a capital raise.
  25. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    I think shorts understand Tesla's CapEx very well. It's a key part of the bear argument. Their Q4 letter said they expected higher CapEx in 2018 than 2017. Tesla's CFO said "way more than 50%" of that would go to the Model 3 ramp. So, reading into that: Tesla has 3.5B cash and they're...
  26. M

    TSLA Market Action: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    I think the flaw in your logic is that Tesla has told us they expect CapEx in 2018 to be the same (or higher) as 2017. The machinery and equipment that Tesla is buying are ordered months in advance. When they want to build a new store, those contracts are made before construction begins. So...
  27. M

    q1 2018 earnings estimates

    The bolded portion of your post is what I'm saying; we have no idea if they're on track for 5k (or 6k) by the end of this quarter. And we have no idea how many Model 3s they expect to deliver this quarter (I could see ranges from 20k on the bear side to 40k on the bull side). That range...
  28. M

    q1 2018 earnings estimates

    I'm not sure why the 2500/week isn't relevant to Q1 earnings and Q2 forecasts? I anticipate that Musk will be asked directly if TSLA has had a week in which 2500 Model 3s were produced, and how that shifts the timeline for the 5000 Model 3 weekly production. I think investors will expect and...
  29. M

    q1 2018 earnings estimates

    It's their Q4 shareholder letter: Tesla (TSLA) announces Q4 2017 earnings: record revenue of ~$3.3 billion and wide losses "Weekly production" implies a sustained rate imo. Mod: This is intentionally misleading. Here is the actual full extract. We don't tolerate this kind of behavior for very...
  30. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    I'd love to understand these a bit more. How exactly do rising gas prices impact Tesla? A rudimentary analysis indicates that the average American spent $1400 on gasoline in 2016, and that consumption went down in 2017. Even if gas prices doubled, do you really think that an additional $1400...
  31. M

    q1 2018 earnings estimates

    Some other data I'm expecting on the call: Tesla has still not hit a sustained 2.5k/week Model 3 rate, missing their Q1 target by over a month. Tesla will not firmly commit to 5k/week Model 3s by the end of Q2. Tesla will back down from their 10k/week year-end target. Musk's "zero worry" quote...
  32. M

    CuriousSunbird: Tesla must raise capital

    No, actually. In 2012, Musk said they would be profitable that year and wouldn't need to raise capital. In 2014, Musk said they'd be profitable by Q3 2015. In Q1 2015, Musk said they'd be profitable by Q4. In Q4 2015, Musk said they'd be profitable by Q1 2016. In 2016, Musk said they'd...
  33. M

    Open Source Bear Narrative Rebuttals

    Just confused by this one. Tesla needs cash, or at the very least, liquidity. SpaceX holdings aren't liquid. How are you suggesting that Elon would bail out Tesla with SpaceX holdings, exactly? 20% is really, really high. Most of the potential buyers of Tesla would want it to be cleaned in...
  34. M

    Why do people really want Tesla to fail?

    I'm on the short side. Ultimately, I see a few key problems with Tesla that make me feel that it deserves failure: As a public company, Tesla's corporate governance is just awful. It is insane that Elon Musk, as chairman of the board, can frequently make ridiculous statements and promises. See...
  35. M

    Jim Keller leaves the autopilot team

    Ah, sorry, I thought you were replying to the post right before yours You should be disappointed. In my opinion, it's ridiculous that Tesla has marketed autopilot the way it has.
  36. M

    Full Self Driving ability by end of the YEAR ?

    Tesla's website defines what "FSD" is. It's marketed as a key reason to upgrade to "Full Self-Driving Capability": Autopilot
  37. M

    Jim Keller leaves the autopilot team

    Uhhh, that's not how Tesla advertises its cars... And if you're someone who's feeling annoyed about that, you should join the class action lawsuit. Calling it "hype" is just unfair given that Tesla still actively promotes this functionality. Tesla Autopilot Website Emphasis added:
  38. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    How does your model change if Q1 margins are -20% or worse? At what point would you worry? That's what I'm asking. I'm expecting a gross margin in the high negative teens. VA is expecting 0. Is there no number relevant here to the bulls?
  39. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    So there is no point at which the Q1 report will sway your opinion? The gross margin of the first 10,000 Model 3s is an irrelevant metric to you? My intent is to understand the logic here. I struggle to see a world in which Tesla is making 1B+ FCF in the back-half of 2018. You clearly can see...
  40. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Just to get it on the record here, you said in your SA post/comments that you expected a 0 gross margin on the model 3 in Q1. What level of gross margin would frighten you? On the short side, I'm obviously expecting a negative gross margin. But I'm curious what magnitude would give you pause.
  41. M

    Hey, I've been shadowbanned and can't post in the forums anymore. I did want to reply to your...

    Hey, I've been shadowbanned and can't post in the forums anymore. I did want to reply to your post. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1fPzMSBFLpNT_sK3rMpQ1hPljizsN9Twk5jLyQxvLgTw/edit?usp=sharing
  42. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Thanks! Unfortunately, it may be hard for me to respond as I believe I've been shadowbanned on this forum. My posts show up for me, but no one else, so I've just ducked out and stopped posting. I think the main concern it added was gross margins and timeline. These are central to the bear...
  43. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    California Opens Investigation Into Tesla Workplace Conditions
  44. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    I'm not sure how bulls can spin that email leak as a positive development: It declares an intent for 24/7 production, which will hurt gross margins. Tesla already has more employees-per-car-produced than any major automaker. It's vague when Model 3 production is actually going to achieve a...
  45. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Just insane... Don't believe this. I know I'm a few days late, but this tweet really is just way across the line: Elon Musk on Twitter This is why the SEC is investigating Tesla. You shouldn't be CEO of a 50B+ public company and give guidance like "will be profitable & cash flow positive in...
  46. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Moody's is a respected credit agency. When they downgraded TSLA debt, bond prices fell. You can't point at 2007/2008 and say "well, Moody's is worthless." Moody's does make errors, but they still command market respect. What In The World Is Tesla Doing? Bizarre Manufacturing Processes Produce...
  47. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    No, I absolutely will not cover until after the Q1 report (or if the stock somehow reaches 430). I believe that Tesla will post record losses without breaking 3k Model 3s/week. I'm a little suspicious of Autopilot and think there's a small chance that the DoT or California shut it off. Or...
  48. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Ok... The issue is that the "bear story" includes numbers that look awfully similar to this. The next chapter of the bear story is media posting headlines like "Tesla posts biggest quarterly loss ever" and "Tesla loses over 1 Billion in a quarter" when their Q1 earnings come out in early May...
  49. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    Were they off on Easter? There were reports that they were working on Easter, and Elon's leaked emails seemed to indicate that, too. All I'm pointing out is that the press release is dated April 3, and it clearly starts off that paragraph with "the past 7 days." Throw in Elon's email, and I...
  50. M

    General Discussion: 2018 Investor Roundtable

    I feel like the press release is better for the bears... First, Tesla subtly moving the goal posts again. They didn't report cars made during the last 7 days of the quarter, just "the past 7 days," including April 1 and 2. They also dropped a hard commitment for 5k/week by the end of Q2, now...

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