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Nov. 18, 2021, 9:23 a.m. EST

Why is there no EV love for Ford and GM? Cathie Wood says ‘they don’t have the DNA for this brave new world’ of electric cars

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By Mark DeCambre

Electric vehicle makers are all the rage in 2021 and General Motors /zigman2/quotes/205226835/composite GM -3.78% and Ford Motor /zigman2/quotes/208911460/composite F -3.22% have made tremendous strides in growing their EV businesses, but investment manager Cathie Wood says it may be too little, too late for those traditional car manufacturers.

Wood said that GM and Ford are seeing stellar stock performances this year, with investors giving them some credit for their attempts to shift from internal combustion engines, or ICE, to electric vehicles. The big challenge though is that EV manufacturing is not inherent to those companies.

“And the reason is they don’t have the DNA for this brave new world,” said Wood during an interview with MarketWatch sister publication Barron’s in a Wednesday afternoon interview.

Wood said that Ford and GM “were born in the industrial, gas-powered age” and said that they have to make “one giant leap” to transform their ICE focused businesses. Ford was founded in 1903 and GM was founded in 1908, but both have recently emerged with promising EV vehicles to compete with the likes of Tesla Inc. /zigman2/quotes/203558040/composite TSLA -1.82% .

Shares of Ford are up 126% so far this year, bringing the company’s market cap to around $80 billion; GM’s shares, meanwhile, are up 55% for this year, with its market cap at $94 billion.

Investors have been keenly focused on the performance of EV upstarts like Lucid Group /zigman2/quotes/221104327/composite LCID -7.13% , whose surge in recent sessions brought its market cap to $91 billion on Tuesday. A rally in Rivian Automotive Inc. /zigman2/quotes/230726939/composite RIVN -8.49% , which recently made its debut on the Nasdaq, saw its shares surge, bringing its total value to $150 billion.

Wood is a renowned money manager, whose funds focus on making investments in disruptive innovations and she manages the flagship $20.7 billion ARK Innovation ETF /zigman2/quotes/204808965/composite ARKK -4.15% . ARK Innovation had been a highflier in 2021 until a rotation out of growth stocks helped to pummel her vehicle which is down 6% so far in 2021.

By comparison, the Dow Jones Industrial Average /zigman2/quotes/210598065/realtime DJIA -1.51% was up 17% in the year to date, the S&P 500 index /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX -1.84% was rising nearly 25%, and the technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index /zigman2/quotes/210598365/realtime COMP -2.60% was up nearly 24%.

/zigman2/quotes/205226835/composite
US : U.S.: NYSE
$ 58.79
-2.31 -3.78%
Volume: 18.32M
Jan. 18, 2022 4:00p
P/E Ratio
7.86
Dividend Yield
0.00%
Market Cap
$88.71 billion
Rev. per Employee
$844,761
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/zigman2/quotes/208911460/composite
US : U.S.: NYSE
$ 24.38
-0.81 -3.22%
Volume: 110.82M
Jan. 18, 2022 4:04p
P/E Ratio
33.64
Dividend Yield
1.64%
Market Cap
$100.67 billion
Rev. per Employee
$723,737
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/zigman2/quotes/203558040/composite
US : U.S.: Nasdaq
$ 1,030.51
-19.10 -1.82%
Volume: 22.33M
Jan. 18, 2022 4:00p
P/E Ratio
333.67
Dividend Yield
N/A
Market Cap
$1054.09 billion
Rev. per Employee
$662,097
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/zigman2/quotes/221104327/composite
US : U.S.: Nasdaq
$ 39.21
-3.01 -7.13%
Volume: 29.65M
Jan. 18, 2022 4:00p
P/E Ratio
N/A
Dividend Yield
N/A
Market Cap
$69.51 billion
Rev. per Employee
N/A
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/230726939/composite
US : U.S.: Nasdaq
$ 73.16
-6.79 -8.49%
Volume: 16.82M
Jan. 18, 2022 4:00p
P/E Ratio
N/A
Dividend Yield
N/A
Market Cap
$71.98 billion
Rev. per Employee
N/A
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/zigman2/quotes/204808965/composite
US : U.S.: NYSE Arca
$ 76.91
-3.33 -4.15%
Volume: 23.47M
Jan. 18, 2022 4:00p
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/210598065/realtime
US : Dow Jones Global
35,368.47
-543.34 -1.51%
Volume: 427.26M
Jan. 18, 2022 4:56p
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime
US : S&P US
4,577.11
-85.74 -1.84%
Volume: 2.74B
Jan. 18, 2022 4:56p
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/zigman2/quotes/210598365/realtime
US : Nasdaq
14,506.90
-386.86 -2.60%
Volume: 4.43M
Jan. 18, 2022 5:16p
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