2023-04-20 10:55:04 ET
Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) reported its highly anticipated first-quarter results after the market close Wednesday, and investors were not impressed. The electric vehicle (EV) leader's shares tanked by more than 8.5% at Thursday's market open and remained down by 7% as of 10:15 a.m. ET. That drop brought Tesla stock to its lowest level since January.
Most analysts and investors were focusing on how Tesla's profit margins would change after the company reduced its EV prices globally. With its latest price cut, which it made on Wednesday ahead of the earnings report, Tesla has now trimmed its vehicles' U.S. sticker prices on six separate occasions this year. For the quarter, its automotive gross margin came in at 18.3% -- much lower than anticipated, and down from more than 25% in the fourth quarter. On the fourth-quarter 2022 conference call in January, Tesla management said that they expected to maintain a 20% margin over the course of 2023. But CEO Elon Musk was unapologetic and shifted the investment narrative during Wednesday evening's conference call.