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Tesla CEO Elon Musk apologizes to analysts

Shares of Tesla dropped sharply in after-hours trading Thursday court documents showed the Securities and Exchange Commission is suing Elon Musk for fraud.

Tesla (TSLA) CEO Elon Musk apologized during a second-quarter earnings call on Wednesday for impoliteness towards Wall Street analysts during the prior earnings call.

During the first-quarter call in May, Musk cut off Toni Sacconaghi, senior technology analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein, dubbing his question on Model 3 gross margins "boring." He took a first question from Sacconaghi on Wednesday, and promptly apologized for his prior conduct.

That day, the stock plunged in after-hours trading in response to the perceived insult.

On July 16, Tesla stock plunged again after Elon Musk insulted Vernon Unsworth, a British cave diver who helped rescue 12 Thai boys and their soccer coach, on Twitter. Unsworth said he was considering legal action against Musk, because the CEO labeled him "pedo guy."

On Wednesday, Musk said of his impoliteness towards analysts, "I violated my own rule in that regard...There's no excuse." The CEO's contrite tone on Wednesday's call may assuage the concerns of investors who worried about Musk's leadership style under pressure.

CFRA's Efraim Levy wrote in a note to investors on Wednesday, even ahead of the call:

"We like the more muted tone of the company's outlook, with the absence of unnecessary new stretch goals. One example is TSLA's reiterating a Model 3 production rate goal of 6,000 units per week by late August, with a more vague time frame to reach production of 10,000 units per week, despite our expectation for a more accelerated ramp. Perhaps it reflects a more cautious Elon Musk."

Tesla shares were up 10 percent in after hours trading on Wednesday.

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