Stocks of electric vehicles are increasing

The all-electric Rivian R1T truck in Times Square on stock exchange day on Wednesday, November 10, 2021 in New York.

Ann-Sophie Fjello-Jensen | AP

Troubled shares of several electric vehicle startups surged Thursday in wild and largely unexplained trading.

Rivian Automotive reported a first-quarter loss after the market close on Wednesday, narrower than Wall Street had been expecting, and Lordstown Motors announced it had closed a major deal to sell its Ohio factory.

Shares ended the day up about 18% and 47%, respectively.

Here are some of the other EV stocks that made big moves Thursday:

Several of the group’s companies, including Lucid, Fisker, Nikola and Rivian, have offered quarterly updates over the past few days, which have come in better than Wall Street had anticipated, largely reassuring investors that longer-term business plans remain on track.

However, many of the EV names that made the biggest moves Thursday are former “meme stocks” that have surged over the past year on strong retail interest. Many have since been severely shorted. Stocks with high short interest often rise during market rallies when investors holding short positions duck for cover by buying the stock, adding upward pressure on the move.

Two of the most notable meme stocks, GameStop and AMC Entertainment, were also significantly higher Thursday — each up a double-digit point — with GameStop trading halted several times due to volatility.

Even with the sudden rally, all EV stocks are still trading well below their 2021 highs. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index is still around 30% off its record high.

Read more about electric vehicles from CNBC Pro

Missing from Thursday’s list of major EV movers was Tesla, the industry leader in electric vehicle production. Tesla shares closed down about 1% on the day.

Traditional automakers Ford Motor and General Motors fared even worse, down 3% and over 4%, respectively, after Wells Fargo analyst Colin Langan downgraded the bank’s ratings on both to “underweight” late Wednesday night .

Used-car network Carvana, another sharply trimmed stock, closed nearly 25% after climbing over 40% on Thursday morning. Stocks of electric vehicles are increasing

Jane Marczewski

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