Chinese electric vehicle maker Nio (NYSE:NIO) jumped up around 4% in premarket trading overnight, and that momentum kept going into this morning's session until some profit-taking stepped in. The biggest news for Nio is focused on recent delivery numbers that proved positive for the company. Meanwhile, the broader financial analyst community is proving quite pleased with this news, and a pattern of rapidly-increasing bullishness has settled in for Nio stock overall.
Nio Electric Vehicle Deliveries on the Rise
The latest word out of Nio puts June deliveries at 8,083 for the month, which is more than double what the company brought out in June 2020. Additionally, this brings the second quarter's delivery count to 21,896. That's in line with the higher end of Nio's own forecast for the second quarter, in which it looked to bring out between 21,000 and 22,000 vehicles for the time in question. Even better for Nio, the numbers for the first half of 2021 now stand at just over 41,900, which is almost how many vehicles the company brought out in all of 2020.
Given that these numbers come in the midst of a worldwide semiconductor shortage—a phenomenon that impacted delivery numbers between April and May for Nio—it's a particular achievement. However, Nio's numbers lag significantly behind those of others in the field, particularly Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA), which brought out 184,800 vehicles just in the first quarter of 2021. However, Nio is also beating some of its contemporaries; Xpeng (NYSE:XPEV) managed to increase its numbers seven-fold from this time last year, bringing out 6,565 vehicles, which is still substantially less than Nio's rollout. Xpeng stock has also seen its share of gains.
What Are Financial Analysts Saying About NIO Stock?
While Nio itself is rolling out some exciting numbers, financial analysts are engaging in the excitement of their own. The current Nio stock forecast is a “buy”, and that's been the case since December of 2020, when it switched over from “hold” to “buy”.
A year ago, Nio had four “buy” ratings to its credit, along with three “hold” and one “sell.” Six months ago, bullish sentiment began to take off as the company now had seven “buy” ratings, along with four “hold” and one “sell”. The “sell” rating, meanwhile, had departed the field by April 2021, and currently, we stand at 13 “buy” ratings and six “hold” ratings. With “buy” now outmassing “hold” by a little better than two to one, it's clear that the financial analyst community is putting a lot of weight behind Nio.
Nio share price targets, meanwhile, have an almost disturbing spread. The current average is $54.53, bookended by a high of $80.30 and a low of $13.50. The low goes all the way back to July 2020, when CICC research established the target after raising the company's rating from “neutral” to “outperform.” The high, meanwhile, traces back to January, when Nomura Instinet initiated coverage on Nio, giving it a “buy” rating and the $80.30 price target. With Nio trading around $54 today, there's still some upside potential to be had as it's merely close to the average rather than the high. Some recent forecasts even suggest a possibility that, sometime in the next several years, Nio could ultimately clear the $100 per share mark.
Recent developments for the company have been universally positive. June alone saw three positive improvements, as Citigroup upped its price target from $58.30 to $72. Citigroup upgraded both rating and price target, going from “neutral” to “buy”, and from $57.60 to $58.30 on price targets. Finally, BOCOM International initiated coverage on Nio with a “buy” recommendation and a $57 price target.
It's also worth pointing out that, earlier this week, Nio saw some of the most intense activity in options trading that had been seen in some time. The company saw around 310,000 call options sold and 111,000 put options, which is roughly double typical intraday volumes. Given that Nio also recently maxed out the Schaeffer Volatility Scorecard figures, it's little surprise that investors are making plans for big swings one way or another. With the bulk of traders looking for an upside, it's a safe bet that that's where things will wind up.
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