(Reuters) – Shares of Tesla surged to a record high in heavy trading on Thursday, with the electric car makerâ€™s stock market value exceeding Facebookâ€™s for the first time.
Shares in the company led by Elon Musk jumped nearly 8% to end the session at $816, putting its market capitalization at $774 billion and making it Wall Streetâ€™s fifth-most-valuable company, just behind Google-parent Alphabet and ahead of Facebook.
Facebookâ€™s stock market value was $765 billion after its shares rose about 2%, according to Refinitiv data.
(GRAPHIC: Tesla’s stock market value tops Facebook – )
Over $39 billion worth of Teslaâ€™s shares were bought and sold during the session, a record for Tesla and more than the next three most traded companies combined, which were Apple , Alibaba Group Holding and Amazon.com.
(GRAPHIC: Tesla dominates Wall Street – )
Tesla, up over 700% in the past 12 months, has become the most valuable auto company in the world by far, despite production that is a fraction of rivals such as Toyota Motor, Volkswagen and General Motors.
Musk surpassed Amazonâ€™s Jeff Bezos to become the worldâ€™s richest person, Bloomberg News reported on Thursday.
Teslaâ€™s latest lift came after RBC raised its rating on the stock to â€œsector performâ€ from â€œunderperform.â€
RBC analyst Joseph Spak said in his research note that he previously underestimated Teslaâ€™s ability to use its soaring stock price to raise capital to fund the companyâ€™s expansion.
â€œWe took a fresh look at the growth opportunity, what we got wrong about TSLAâ€™s positioning and the valuation and conclude that the stock price itself is likely to be somewhat self-fulfilling to TSLAâ€™s growth and strategy,â€ Spak wrote.
Analysts, on average, expect Tesla to report $1.2 billion in net profits for 2020, compared with $5.8 billion in net profits expected from GM and $27.1 billion in net profits expected from Facebook, according to Refinitiv.
Reporting by Noel Randewich, Editing by Nick Zieminski and Dan Grebler