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Tesla stock is ‘a confidence gauge’ for markets: Strategist

Tesla (TSLA) is a “barometer” of market confidence, says TD Ameritrade chief market strategist JJ Kinahan. “This is a name that really is a confidence gauge in my opinion,” Kinahan told Yahoo Finance Live.

“If it gets down near the $950-ish level, you’ll see clients coming in and buy it up until it gets to about $1,050. When it gets above $1,050, it seems to make clients a little be nervous, so the amount of buying there starts to dissipate a little bit.”

Shares of the electric vehicle giant were up more than 4% on Wednesday, despite a hot inflation print.

“This is my barometer, so to speak, of people who are more confident in the market. And then when people are a little more nervous the two names we look to are Apple (AAPL) and Microsoft (MSFT),” said Kinahan.

“These are blue chip, so to speak, stocks but also have that growth component when things are going well,” he added.

The increasing probability of higher Fed rate hikes didn’t deter investors from putting money in technology stocks during Wednesday’s session.

“In December our clients took less exposure to the markets than they had all year,” said Kinahan. 

“Earlier this week you started to see how quickly that sentiment can change and people coming in to buy the dip,” he said. 

Last week, growth stocks came under pressure following a more hawkish tone from Federal Reserve minutes. 

On Monday, some of the big cap tech and internet stocks opened lower but finished the session either flat or higher.

Despite the recent volatility, some strategists still point to growth stocks with healthy balance sheets. 

“As economic conditions start to slow down, you do need to see balance sheets very, very strong,” Principal Global Investors Chief Strategist Seema Shah told Yahoo Finance Live earlier this week. 

“Although this is quite a challenging time, we do still have some faith in mega-cap tech names, especially from a stability perspective for your portfolio,” she added. 

Ines is a markets reporter covering stocks from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Follow her on Twitter at @ines_ferre

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