Called to Account: Tesla’s production, delivery numbers change multiple times between filings

Tesla, Inc. publicizes updated vehicle production and delivery data more than once at the end of each quarter and those numbers change frequently, raising questions about the quality of the company’s accounting function amid a wave of turnover in the department.

Tesla TSLA, +5.27% issues a press release immediately after the end of each quarter with a brief update on the number of cars produced and delivered during the prior three months. This press release also discloses the number of cars in transit to customers and, often, cumulative totals for these key metrics on a year-to-date basis.

When Tesla later formally announces quarterly earnings, typically one month after the quarter ends, prior period production and delivery numbers that were announced often change, sometimes increasing and sometimes decreasing, but rarely consistent with prior announcements.

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