Tesla Prepares for Heavy Trading Ahead of S&P 500 Debut

A torrent of trading is expected on Friday as the world’s most highly valued automaker in advance of its landmark S&P 500 inclusion.

Elon Musk’s Tesla on Monday will become the most highly valued company ever admitted to the S&P 500, with a market cap that will account for over 1% of the entire index.

Its 21 December listing is predicted to trigger a rush of stock trading on Friday as index-trading funds acquire shares so their portfolios will correctly reflect the S&P 500. $80 billion of the company’s stock is expected to change hands by the end of Friday’s session.

In addition to acquiring Tesla shares, funds mapping onto the index will simultaneously be forced to sell shares in other S&P 500 constituents worth the same amount.

Actively managed funds that use the S&P 500 as a benchmark for their performance, many of which have thus far shied away from investing in Tesla for fear that it has become , will have to decide whether they will risk buying its stock.

Shares in Tesla have risen by almost 700% in the past year, ranking it as the sixth most valuable publicly listed US company with a stock market value of over $600 billion. Stocks hit all-time highs on Thursday at $655.90 per share.

Tesla’s unprecedented stock surge in 2020 has pushed founder and CEO Elon Musk’s total net worth to more than $150 billion, cementing him as the world’s second-richest person ahead of former Microsoft CEO Bill Gates. Despite its current market value, Tesla has only turned a profit for five consecutive quarters, and recently completed a $5 billion equity sale to capitalise on its explosive growth.

A study by Invezz found that Tesla shares were the most popular stock to invest in for Europeans in 2020. The company was the most commonly searched-for stock in 26 of 31 European countries analysed.

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