Since I last wrote about it on Aug. 13, Lucid Group (NASDAQ:LCID) stock has drifted back below $20 per share. Is it time to “buy the dip?”
Not so fast. The pullback in this electric vehicle (EV) stock may be just getting started.
Besides its recent lockup expiration and the waning appeal of special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) stocks, other factors could mean more declines ahead.
Even as the company itself, considered to be the EV startup that could give Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) a run for its money, keeps on making progress.
Sure, changes in monetary policy may not happen soon, a risk I highlighted previously. Yet the Federal Reserve could throw a curveball between now and the start of 2022. Overarching issues could also push Lucid down to even lower prices.
So, despite its promise, should you avoid this stock? Yes, at least at today’s prices. But there may be a silver lining to the aforementioned factors that could apply more downward pressure.
If it falls down to a less inflated price months down the road, making a long-term bet on this electrification play may be well worth it.
Two Factors Have Put Pressure on LCID Stock
As mentioned above, there’s a lot at play right now that’s putting pressure on Lucid Group shares. First, the recent expiration of its insider lockup.
Starting Sept. 1, private investment in public equity (PIPE) investors in the company, such as the Saudi sovereign wealth fund, along with institutional investors like BlackRock (NYSE:BLK) are technically now able to sell shares they own on the open market.
Admittedly, that doesn’t mean it’s going to happen. Large holders of LCID stock didn’t get into it to flip it. Also, this concern may already have been absorbed. After sinking from around $20 per share to prices under $17.50 per share, the EV play has nearly made it back to the $20 price level.
Second, the declining popularity of SPAC stocks overall has negatively affected Lucid’s stock performance. Not only that, as it’s no longer trending on Reddit’s r/WallStreetBets subreddit, it doesn’t have much meme momentum on its side anymore.
As more still holding it realize that its slim chances of zooming back to its past high of $64.86, a further drip lower may be in store.
That said, additional pressure from these factors may be minimal. Yet what’s not minimal is the downside risk that could arise from market-wide concerns.
Despite Progress, More Downside May Be Ahead
Lucid continues to make progress in bringing its flagship Air luxury EV sedan to market. Later this month, the company even plans to show off its production facilities to the public, at its Production Preview Week kicking off on Sept 27.
It may be inching closer to its first vehicles rolling off the assembly line. Yet don’t take that to mean there’s a likely rebound ahead for LCID stock in the coming months.
Instead, it may be more likely that other factors, largely out of its control, put more pressure on shares, sending them down to even lower prices.
I’m talking specifically about potential changes in Federal Reserve monetary policies and their likely negative impact on growth stocks.
It’s true that Fed Chair Jerome Powell’s speech last month may have indicated that interest rate increases won’t happen sooner than expected. Even his support for tapering of the central bank’s bond purchase program wasn’t seen as bad news because the markets view concerns like Covid-19’s Delta variant and the slowdown in new job creation, as indicators that the Fed will do so later rather than sooner.
That may keep Lucid from falling big in September and October, but once tapering happens (whether in December, or even sooner) it could negatively affect growth names like LCID stock.
Also, as Barron’s reported, factors outside of the Fed could still make stocks struggle in the fall. Issues relating to Covid, inflation and taxes could cause a correction. If this happens, it’ll likely hit past high fliers like this one the hardest.
The Verdict: Wait for Lower Prices
The PIPE lockdown expiration may be fully absorbed into Lucid’s stock price. Waning retail enthusiasm for SPAC stocks may not have much more impact, either. Nevertheless, there’s still more in play to sink the stock rather than send it surging again in the short term.
The valuation of LCID today at almost $20 per share still prices-in its long-term and then some, as was the case back in July, when it traded for around $27 per share.
If the issues mentioned above sink it further towards its SPAC offering price of $10 per share, investors still bullish that it’s a “Tesla killer” in the making may be able to buy at a price where the odds are more in their favor.
On the date of publication, Thomas Niel did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.
Thomas Niel, contributor for InvestorPlace.com, has been writing single-stock analysis for web-based publications since 2016.