Ford’s market value tops $100 billion for the first time

Ford Motor Company CEO Jim Farley speaks during a news conference at the Rouge Complex on September 17, 2020 in Dearborn, Michigan.

Rebecca Cook | Reuters

Detroit– Ford’s Shares of the automaker hit a new 52-week high on Thursday, and its market value topped $100 billion for the first time.

The company’s shares rose 5.7 percent to $25.87, another record high. 20-year high. Its market cap was around $102 billion as of 1:50 p.m. Thursday.

The growth was fueled by Ford’s plans to increase production of electric vehicles, including Mustang Mach-E Crossover and the upcoming electric version Best Selling F-150 Pickup That was due this spring. These efforts are part of a Ford+ transformation plan led by CEO Jim Farley, who took over at the helm in October 2020.

Ford is now worth more than cross-city rivals General Motors, about $90 billion, and electric vehicle startups Rivian Automotive, $75 billion, failing to sustain gains after a blockbuster IPO in November.Ford continues to lag significantly Tesla, with a market capitalization of over $1 trillion.

The automaker has an overweight rating and a price target of $21.83 per share, according to the average of 22 analysts compiled by FactSet. But not all Wall Street analysts didn’t fully embrace Ford’s shift.

“The appeal of the stock market to the Ford EV story continues to surprise us,” Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas said in a Thursday report titled “Ford Market Cap Hits $100 Billion: What’s the Price?” told investors.

Morgan Stanley’s target price for Ford is $12 per share. According to Jonas, it has a bullish forecast for the stock at $25 per share.

“Ford’s share price action has been impressive, and management deserves credit for changing the strategic narrative and triggering a re-rating,” Jonas said. “However, at this juncture, we believe risks to Ford and the industry are rising faster than opportunities.”

Jonas cited the auto industry’s historical cyclical return, challenges to expanding EV production and more competitive and attractive EVs entering the market to counter Ford’s concerns.

– CNBC Michael Bloom contributed to this report.