Tesla investors, buckle your seatbelts - the red-hot stock is likely to go from the fast lane into hyper-drive.
Having soared 500 percent over the past year - revving to record high after record high – there are two major upcoming events that could push the stock even higher.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk reports results on July 22nd and he could cross the finish line with his fourth straight quarterly profit - something never before seen for the electric car maker. If that happens, investors are betting that will trigger another milestone....an entrance into the benchmark S&P 500 index.
Fund managers who mimic the S&P 500 would then be forced to buy the stock.
S&P Dow Jones - the keeper of the S&P 500 - would neither confirm nor deny plans to add Tesla to the index, but said the so-called index funds that would need to buy Tesla to replicate the S&P 500 hold at least $4.4 trillion in assets.
And there are trillions of dollars more at stake from stock pickers who are judged by a how well they do compared to the S&P 500; they too may be forced to buy Tesla shares.
Sounds like a one-way bet to some, but others may see it as a speed trap.
Not only is Tesla one of the most beloved stocks on Wall Street it is also one of the most controversial, due in part to Musk’s sometime mercurial behavior.
Investors betting against the stock have put up $19 billion - the largest-ever bet that a company's stock will fall, according to one estimate. These naysayers point out that Tesla's entrance into the S&P 500 is far from a guarantee… And while the company may grab lots of headlines, it still sells far fewer cars than its larger rivals.
In addition, competitors such as Porsche and General Motors are hard at work on their own electric models, hoping to eventually dim Tesla's halo and its meteoric stock price.