EV Deliveries for Li Auto and NIO Were Solid. That’s Good for Tesla.

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The Li Xiang One PHEV

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Courtesy of Li Auto Inc.

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Chinese electric-vehicle makers NIO,

XPeng and Li Auto are reporting March deliveries on Friday.

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Numbers from Li (ticker: LI) and NIO (NIO) were out first. Deliveries improved from February. That’s good news, but probably won’t be enough to break the stocks out of their recent funk. The two results, however, look just fine for Tesla investors.

Li Auto delivered 11,034 units in March, up from about 8,400 delivered in February and up from about 4,900 vehicles delivered in March 2021.

NIO delivered about 9,895 vehicles in March, up from about 6,100 delivered in February and up from about 7,300 vehicles delivered in March 2021.

Shares of Li were rising almost 5% in premarket trading. But shares were down 4.9% Thursday. At about $27 a share, the stock is essentially unchanged over the past couple of days. NIO stock gained 5.8% in premarket trading. Its shares dropped 5% Thursday. S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average futures were both up about 0.5%.

Early trading in the two stocks offers some relief for investors. Coming into Friday trading, shares of Li, NIO as well as XPeng (XPEV) have declined about 33% year to date, on average. Falling deliveries haven’t helped. The trio delivered about 102,000 EVs in the fourth quarter of 2021. Deliveries in the first quarter should total about 90,000 units.

Rising interest rates, inflation and renewed fears about delisting of US-listed Chinese stocks also have sapped some investors’ enthusiasm for the three stocks.

The stocks might get a Friday bump, but investors might not be able to hope for more than that. The March numbers from any of the three shouldn’t be big surprises. The trio all recently reported fourth-quarter results and provided an outlook for first-quarter deliveries.

When reporting its fourth quarter numbers, Li said it expected to deliver about 31,000 cars in the quarter. That implied March deliveries of about 10,300 units. The company did about 700 more than that. Guidance for NIO implied about 9,700 units. It did a couple hundred better than that.

Based on guidance, XPeng (XPEV) expects to deliver about 14,600 vehicles in March, up from about 6,200 delivered in February and up from about 5,100 delivered in March 2021.

The Li and NIO results looks fine for Tesla (TSLA). The numbers were, essentially, just a little bit better than expectations. That’s a small positive for EV demand in China.

Tesla will report first-quarter deliveries any time now. Wall Street is looking for deliveries of about 315,000 vehicles, up from about 309,000 vehicles delivered in the fourth quarter of 2021. Rising deliveries would be a better result than the three Chinese EV makers, but Tesla, of course, is also selling in many European countries as well as the US

Tesla stock rose 0.3% in premarket trading. Coming into Friday trading, Tesla stock is up about 2% year to date.

Write to Al Root at [email protected]

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Credit: www.marketwatch.com /

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