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Tesla shares soar 40.5% to $23.89 on first day of trading

June 29, 2010 |  1:54 pm

On their first trading day, shares of Tesla Motor Co.  rocketed $6.89, or 40.5%, to $23.89. The gain was all the more impressive because it came as the overall stock market plummeted

The Dow Jones industrial average slumped 268.22 points, or 2.7%, to 9,870.30.

Most analysts said the electric car company’s strong debut was to be expected, though many also cautioned that Palo Alto-based Tesla has a long way to go before becoming profitable and stable. The company must first successfully produce and market its $57,000 Model S sedan.

“This was probably as good as Tesla could have hoped,” said Mike Omotoso, senior manager of global powertrain at J.D. Power & Associates. “But a lot is riding on the Model S. If that one model isn’t successful, it puts Tesla’s other plans into question.”

-- Tiffany Hsu