The net worth of Teslaâ€™s Elon Musk hit $176.3 billion â€” nearing Jeff Bezosâ€™ $186.3 billion fortune, according to Forbes. Meanwhile, Bitcoin hit an all-time high of $39,518 â€” yielding a market capitalization over $700 billion, noted CNBC.
Which is a better bet â€” Tesla stock or Bitcoin? At the rate these two are growing, Tesla is a better bet. Bitcoin has risen 380% in the last 12 months while Tesla has soared 750%.
To me, they both look like bubbles â€” but there is nothing to stop them from expanding even more.
Elon Muskâ€™s Net Worth
Muskâ€™s net worth rose more than $10 billion Thursday to pull closer to Bezos for the title of the worldâ€™s richest person.
Musk â€” who is also CEO of SpaceX â€” has had a great year. He added nearly $150 billion to his net worth since last March.
Musk holds a 20% stake in Tesla and has $42 billion of unrealized paper gains on vested stock options he received in 2012 and 2018. Bloomberg noted that the latter was â€œthe largest pay deal ever struck between a CEO and a corporate board.â€
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Muskâ€™s net worth journey sent him zipping past many of the icons of American business. He has passed Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates and Bernard Arnault in recent months and now has Bezos in his sights.
Bitcoinâ€™s 380% Surge
Meanwhile, Bitcoin also hit a record high of $39,518 at around 11:10 a.m. on January 7, according to CNBC. Thatâ€™s up 380% in the last year from $8,160 and yields a market capitalization for Bitcoin of more than $700 billion.
While I do not grasp the fundamental case for the increase in Bitcoinâ€™s value, more institutional money is chasing Bitcoinâ€™s price up. CNBC reported that â€œhigh-profile investors like Paul Tudor Jonesâ€ have been buying Bitcoin.
Those who are bullish on the digital currency argue that, like gold, it is a potential safe haven and a hedge against inflation which analysts say will soar as â€œgovernments around the world embark on large scale stimulus programs,â€ CNBC noted.
Of course they said the same thing in 2008 when the U.S. government poured trillions into the financial system to rescue it after the financial collapse. Since then, inflation has remained quiescent even as interest rates have fallen even further.
Meanwhile, JPMorgan put the weight of its reputation on a forecast that Bitcoin will rise another 2.7-fold to hit $146,000. This has helped drive retail investors into Bitcoin driven by fear of missing out.
To be fair, Bitcoin is being used for payment. As Anthony Pompliano, co-founder of crypto hedge fund Morgan Creek Digital, told CNBC, â€œThere was more usage of the bitcoin payment rails than some of the most popular fintech products.â€
A Bitcoin critic, David Rosenberg, sees Bitcoin as a bubble. As he told CNBC, â€œThe parabolic move in bitcoin in such a short time period, I would say for any security, is highly abnormal.â€
Perhaps the same could be said for Tesla stock. With a 750% increase in the last year, it has a stock market capitalization of around $738 billion. It only needs to rise another 36% to hit $1 trillion market capitalization.
Given that Teslaâ€™s revenues have been growing at a 52% average annual rate over the last three years, according to Morningstar, its stock price is rising far faster than its revenue growth would justify.