news-online-resizedTesla Accelerates Past Ford in Market Capitalization

When investors look at the future of Tesla, they like what they see. Earlier this week, Tesla passed Ford in market capitalization, a sure sign that Wall Street is betting on Elon Musk's team to deliver profits over the long term.

It's important to remember that market cap is not the same as book value. But that apparently doesn't matter to investors. The stock market is all about future earnings, and apparently Tesla has passed the test.

"While G.M. and Ford may have strong profits and healthy balance sheets, Tesla offers something Wall Street loves much more: the potential for dramatic growth," writes Bill Vlasic and Neal E. Boudette in the New York Times.

Tesla is uniquely poised "to cash in on the two transformative trends in the industry: the shift to electric vehicles as part of a broader societal move to cleaner energy, and the advent of automated driving," according to Vlasic and Boudette.

At the beginning of the week, Tesla's market cap was $48.7 billion and Ford's was $45.6 billion. General Motors' market cap was $51.2 billion.

New NASA Tech Targets Flight Delays

Thanks to some pioneering tech developed by NASA, we might spend less time in airplanes, even while we're traveling more. NASA is working on technology that enables planes to "talk" to each other - a capability that would substantially reduce the workloads of air traffic controllers and allow more flights in congested airspace around major airports.

"NASA's flight deck interval management (FIM) system ... combines satellite-based location tracking and automated computer commands to keep track of planes' positions and constantly updates pilots on safe flight speeds for landing," writes Jeremy Hsu in Scientific American. FIM could help airlines "save on fuel costs, reduce emissions and bump up the number of flights that arrive on time."

Apple's Mac Still Trails Microsoft in PC Competition

Apple's Mac user base has reached 100 million, but that's still only a quarter the size of the Windows 10 user base. "Add the tepid reception of Apple's latest lineup of 2016 MacBook Pro laptops to the mix, and it's clear that Apple still has its work cut out for it to match Microsoft's Windows," writes Antonio Villas-Boas of Business Insider.
That said, Apple's Mac business has a run rate of nearly $25 billion, which is a good number by any comparison. "That number brings Apple's Mac business on its own closer to a Fortune 100 status," notes Villas-Boas.