Investors brace for market reaction to Musk's brazen Tesla gambit

What will Tesla's board of directors do about Elon Musk

Tesla shares on Monday were recently off 3.5 percent at $311.45.

Now, Musk and his team are working to meet them under even more scrutiny from regulators and from shareholders, and with more competition - the Saudi Public Investment Fund recently made what is likely a billion-dollar deal with Lucid Motors, another electric auto company vying for the same milestones and clientele as Tesla. Many institutional investors would have had their investments restricted, while retail investors would have been left out, he added.

Several analysts suggested that Mr Musk could be replaced as chief executive or that a chief operating officer may be hired to support him.

It remains unclear what Musk meant by "funding secured". At the time Musk only said that the funding was secured.

Tesla had $2.78 billion in cash at the end of the second quarter, after a record $718 million loss.

A Tesla spokesman on Sunday also referred back to those previous comments.

More news: China trade talks end with no breakthrough as tariffs kick in

"With its long term mission intact but short term growth shaky, serious gaps in execution skills and a board under pressure for not assuming its duties, now may be the time for third parties to get involved, be it from technology or even oil", Jefferies analyst Philippe Houchois told clients.

In recent months, it has been beset by recalls, a Security and Exchange Commision investigation and, most recently, a pair of tweets by Musk that have left shareholders and critics wondering if Tesla is on the verge of profitability or if the auto maker meets technology innovator is in a bubble.

Musk also said the company "absolutely must stay focused on ramping Model 3 and becoming profitable".

The stock, always volatile, has traded as high as US$387 and as low as US$288 since August 7, far short of the US$420 a share cash-out price Musk pitched.

Such a deal would likely have strings, such as investors wanting a say in the company. Coffee noted that the SEC may feel as though these disclosures were deficient.

Tesla earlier this year announced plans to build a battery and vehicle assembly complex in China. Musk said earlier this month the company's "default plan" would be to fund that expansion by borrowing money from Chinese banks.

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