The amount investors must pay to insure their debt holdings in Tesla Inc against declining credit quality rose on Monday to its second-highest price ever, implying the company is at a greater risk of default following a report that sparked concern that Tesla may need to raise funds.
Insurance on Tesla’s debt, which is sold as a credit default swap contract, increased from Friday by 13 cents to $5.96 per $100 of Tesla debt. That followed a Wall Street Journal report on Sunday that Tesla had turned to some suppliers for a refund of previously made payments in a bid to make a profit, citing a memo sent by a Tesla global supply manager.
A Tesla spokesperson said on Monday that the company had no comment on the credit default swaps, but said in a statement in response to the WSJ story that Tesla had asked fewer than 10 suppliers to reduce capital expenditure project spending. Tesla said that any changes with these suppliers would improve future cash flows but not affect its ability to achieve profitability in the third quarter, according to Reuters.com
Company founder and Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk may be obligated to tap debt or equity markets again this year, according to analysts, though he has said he would do neither.
The market’s faith in Musk’s ability to raise cash if needed has kept Tesla’s implied risk of default lower than similarly rated junk bonds and has propped up the price of its debt, according to analysts. Tesla’s junk bond coming due in 2025 88160RAE1= fell 1.75 cents to trade as low as 88.875 cents on the dollar, its biggest drop since Moody’s downgraded the company’s senior notes to Caa1 following production delays, according to Reuters
It cost $5.96 to insure $100 of Tesla’s debt, plus an upfront cost of around 18 percent, representing a total of 24.1 percent of the face value of the 2025 bond on Monday.“The CDS is saying that there are a lot of people betting this company is going out of business,” said Thomas Graff, head of fixed income at Brown Advisory.
Tesla has burned cash ramping up production of its Model 3 sedan, which prior to July, had fallen short of a series of targets. Currently, Tesla stocks falls to 303 USD. From the beginning of July the value was 363 per share. It is 20 percent decrease for just one month.