EV Maker VinFast’s Market Cap Spikes to $159 Billion on 9th Day of Trading. This Stuff Would Be Hilarious if it Weren’t so Serious

As an extra special for VinFast, I’m keeping a beautiful slot open in my increasingly packed pantheon of Imploded Stocks.

By Wolf Richter for WOLF STREET.

Despite the general collapse of the stocks that had gone public via merger with a SPAC, and in particular the collapse of EV SPACs, some of which have already filed for bankruptcy, VinFast Auto went public last week by completing its merger with a SPAC. The SPAC’s share price of $10 gave it a valuation of $23 billion. The Vietnamese company, which incorporated in Singapore for the purpose of going public in the US, is part of the Vietnamese conglomerate VinGroup.

VinFast was founded in 2017 and used to make some gasoline cars for the Vietnamese market, which it stopped, and last year, shifted to EVs. It also makes e-scooters. Now it is attempting to make and sell EVs in the US. In March this year, a big hype-and-hoopla was made out of its first 45 deliveries in the US of its Vietnam-made VF8 EVs. But by the end of July, VinFast had only sold 137 of them in the US, according to a Reuters report. A big deal was also made out of the company’s announcements that it would build a factory in North Carolina, designed to produce 150,000 vehicles a year whenever. That’s all fine and dandy. What is not fine and dandy is the stock.

The company had just $65 million in revenues in Q1, according to its SEC filing, but lost $598 million in the quarter. How can you lose $598 million in just one quarter on $65 million in revenues? VinFast shows how.

At this pace, it will lose $2.4 billion in 2023. It lost $2.1 billion in 2022. It lost $1.3 billion in 2021. In other words, losses are huge an accelerating.

On the first day of trading as a combined company after the SPAC merger, the stock [VFS] more than tripled to $37.07, giving it a valuation of $85 billion. Over the next few trading days it spiked and plunged in crazy leaps.

Today, on its ninth trading day as a public company, VinFast’s stock spiked by another 40%, to $68.77 a share, giving it a market capitalization of $159 billion. This is just nuts.

One thing is guaranteed: EV makers that are starting up production will lose gigantic amounts of money for many years until they get to large-scale production and sales volumes at fairly high prices. Until then, they will burn many billions of dollars of cash. Tesla burned about $20 billion in cash over a period of about 10 years before it reached the volume at which it became profitable. If the company cannot raise enough cash to get there, it will collapse, as some already have.

Set up specifically for the meme-stock crowd.

VinFast is a meme stock specifically designed from get-go for the meme-stock crowd. For the real world, it’s a bullshit stock.

There is nearly no public float. Only 0.3% (or 7.17 million) of the company’s 2.307 billion shares are traded. The remaining 99.7% of the shares (2.30 billion shares) are held by entities that are wholly owned by founder and chairman Pham Nhat Vuong. Effectively he controls 99.7% of the shares, according to the SEC filing.

No price discovery, no liquidity. With such a tiny public float, and low trading volumes, there cannot be price discovery, and there is no liquidity. At the $10 SPAC share price, it took only $70 million to buy the entire public float. Small amounts of money by a few meme-stock traders ganging up together – including hedge funds – are able to push the stock price from ridiculous highs to even more ridiculous highs. And that was the purpose of creating this minuscule float.

A hoped-for PIPE dream was scuttled. After the SPAC merger was announced, VinFast said in June that it would try to raise an additional $250 million via a PIPE (private investment in public equity) from institutional investors. These PIPE deals were a common feature of SPACs during the bubble. But it couldn’t get institutional investors interested in it and scuttled the PIPE dream, I mean deal.

Nearly all of the SPAC investors bailed out beforehand. Black Spade Acquisition Co., a blank-check company, or Special Purpose Acquisition Company (SPAC), raised $169 million at its IPO in July 2021. Then it started looking for a merger target and found VinFast. The holders of a SPAC’s shares get to vote on the merger (they approved it), and they get to redeem their shares and get their money back, if they don’t like the merger. And most of the SPAC’s shareholders chose to get their money back. In the end, of the $169 million raised in the SPAC IPO in July 2021, only $13.6 million decided to stick it out.

Only a pittance of $13.6 million was raised with this SPAC merger, instead of the $419 million that the combined amount raised by the IPO of the Black Spade SPAC and the scuttled $250 million PIPE would have provided.

The original IPO was scuttled. VinFast had originally hoped to go public in the US via a classic IPO. It filed for an IPO in December 2022. Citigroup, Morgan Stanley, Credit Suisse, and JP Morgan led a nine-bank syndicate behind the deal. But there was no institutional interest in the deal, and it couldn’t find buyers for the shares in the IPO. So in May 2023, it withdrew the IPO filing. This was when it shifted to going public via merger with a SPAC.

Pumping up the shares to ridiculous levels to sell more shares to Americans. At the pace of its losses in Q1, the company will lose $2.4 billion in 2023. It lost $2.1 billion in 2022. It lost $1.3 billion in 2021. Huge and accelerating losses.

It only had $158 million in cash as of March 31 and would have already run out of cash.

But in April, the company announced that the parent company VinGroup and chairman Pham Nhat Vuong combined committed to providing $1.5 billion in funding: $500 million as nonrefundable grant from VinGroup; and $1 billion from Pham Nhat Vuong. VinFast also said that it now has access to five-year loans from VinGroup amounting to an additional $1 billion. If all this cash materializes, it would amount to $2.5 billion. So may be enough fuel for about a year?

That’s why the shares are getting pumped maniacally to ridiculous highs: The company has to sell more shares at ridiculous prices to extract more cash from Americans to fuel its cash-burn machine. It said as much.

“We have a number of strategic investors and institutional investors lined up. We expect to formulate some kind of capital raising over the next 18 months, for sure,” VinFast CFO David Mansfield told Reuters, which is like really hilarious because the company has failed so far to line up institutional investors, which is why it had to scuttle the IPO and which is why it had to scuttle the PIPE. And now at these valuations, suddenly, institutional investors are going to bite? I mean, this stuff would be hilarious if it weren’t so serious.

It’s OK to start up an automaker and lose tons of money during the first many years, and maybe until the bitter end. It’s OK to stumble along the way. What’s not OK is to set up a scheme like this, where you sell a minuscule number of shares to the public at a ridiculous valuation and then pump those shares, and when they reach a magic valuation near the moon, sell more shares to the public, thereby extracting billions of dollars that may then vanish into nothingness, as the collapse of the shares of the current generation of EV startups has already done – but not in this magnitude.

But who cares. In this world of meme stocks, there are no innocents and no victims. They’re all playing along, hoping that Consensual Hallucination, as I call it, will still work long enough for them to make huge gains in the shortest period of time and cash out.

So as an extra special for VinFast, I’m keeping a beautiful slot open in my increasingly crowded pantheon of Imploded Stocks.

But don’t worry, the paperwork was surely done right, and if the Big S hits the fan, everything will be cool because they dotted all the i’s and crossed all the t’s. Top-ranked global law firm Latham & Watkins LLP acted as counsel for VinFast; Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP acted as Singapore counsel for VinFast; top global accounting firm Ernst & Young Vietnam Limited – please no snickering in the cheap seats – acted as VinFast’s independent registered public accounting firm.

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  121 comments for “EV Maker VinFast’s Market Cap Spikes to $159 Billion on 9th Day of Trading. This Stuff Would Be Hilarious if it Weren’t so Serious

  1. ApartmentInvestor says:

    Maybe this will be the next Toyota? My guess is that it won’t and company is just being used by some “finance” guys that have learned how to rip people off in a more efficiant manner than these guys:

    • Wolf Richter says:

      Read the reviews by some of the auto publications, such as MotorTrend. They’re scathing! They’re so bad, they’re hilarious. Quality problems and design problems out the wazoo. Stuff doesn’t work, stuff is doing funny stuff. Noises, squeaks, and rattles. Badly aligned body panels. A huge list. Oh, and the EPA range is only 207 miles. They’ve got a long ways to go — years — before they have a mass-market good vehicle. And they’re not cheap at $47k.

    • Gen Z says:

      This gimmick almost has a market cap of Toyota, and higher than Ford and GM.

      Something isn’t right. Can’t buy the stonk on the app. Maybe when it reaches peak, the apps will let us suckers use our life savings to buy high, and sell low after they delist and freeze the stonk for a while.

      • kam says:

        Welcome to Financialized America. Where production of Scams exceeds the supply of Common Sense.

        • Gen Z says:

          I’m not touching any of those stonks. When the stonks get delisted on the NASDAQ or NYSE, their values go down dramatically to almost $0.00

        • Thunder says:

          Yes, “The Great American Bubble Machine” (apologies to Matt Taibbi). a very good read from the Past.
          It is Just Gambling at this stage, in a packed Theatre, that has just had that serial arsonist, The Federal Reserve light a few Fires under the seats after intermission.
          There are two small exits with bolted doors.
          Good luck to your Mother!

    • MacGruber says:

      My money is on Toyota being the next Toyota. They understand that hybrids are the place to be right now, assuming you’re selling millions, not hundreds of vehicles, and that you want to make an actual profit. Taking hundreds of billions from investors and cooking the numbers to make it look like you’re making a small profit finally doesn’t count in my book as actual profit.

  2. BobbleheadLincoln says:

    You can’t buy a put option on Vinfast. Whelp that figures.

  3. Harrold says:

    They sold 137 cars. How many were to themselves? IPOs used to be for real companies with a history of sales and growth. Now in fraud america it’s all about ripping off what ever you can get.

  4. Phoenix_Ikki says:

    Knew you wouldn’t be able to stay away from this one…wonder if they will make it into your all time greatest hall of fame crash and burn in the future.

    • Anon1970 says:

      Palm Computing ought to fit into Wolf’s all time greatest crash and burn stories. It was spun off in March 2000 from 3 Com and at the end of its first trading day had a market value of some $50 billion. Lots of people lost money on that stock. I think HP eventually shut it down in 2011.

      • Frithiof Andreas Jensen says:

        I know someone who made enough on that stock to never work again, and then bought shares in Apple with his money. Now his kids will never have to work.

  5. Phoenix_Ikki says:

    Geez, if these jokers can rocket to the moon in valuation with their crappy cars…imagine if BYD start selling their EV here and list their share…they actually have much better quality in comparison and are big in China already

    • Nick Kelly says:

      About 2 weeks ago I wondered if China’s problems could mean trouble for NA manufacturing because if they aren’t going to devote a third of their economy to real estate, they will do something else. With youth unemployment over 20% there are lots of hands available. A few days ago the Globe had a bit about the new problems looming in Germany re: autos. Mercedes sales in China have been greater than US and Germany combined. The German source quoted was worried about Chinese EVs, saying ‘they can produce equivalent quality at a lower price.’

      There is a lot of potential for stuff to go wrong in an IC drive train. Poor Subaru is one case of everything being good except the damn head gaskets. Only certain years. There are two of them in the flat four motor, a type of design they inherited from VW. Hyundai has had to replace motors under warranty. Honda had a bad trans in the 2001 Civic. Ford had a horrible auto trans in Fiesta and Focus ?, which led to a very large settlement when the plaintiffs got hold of Ford’s internal emails, which admitted the problem but shipped anyway.

      There is less to go wrong in an EV drive train. Not likely to have trans probs. Easier for the new player to catch up.

      • kam says:

        Ordinarily Electric Motors outlast Internal Combustion Engines. But mobile machines prove that is not necessarily so. Letourneau never, ever outlasted Caterpillar. And finding Technicians (Mechanics masquerading as Electricians and Computer Wizards) is another challenge.
        I am just shy of 300,000 MILES on my Cummins engine wrapped up in a Dodge/Ram cover. When I get to 500,000 miles, like my last pickup, I’ll buy another. Probably a low mileage used one.

      • intosh says:

        China is overtook Japan as the world’s largest car exporter in 2022.

  6. Phoenix_Ikki says:

    I can’t help but imagine Patrick Boyle delivering this line with his signature sarcastic dry humor tone…classic

    “But it couldn’t get institutional investors interested in it and scuttled the PIPE dream, I mean deal.”

  7. Gen Z says:

    A market cap higher than the Top 5 Canadian banks…no thanks!

    This smells like the Atlis Motors and Peloton hype.

  8. Cas127 says:

    “where you sell a minuscule number of shares to the public at a ridiculous valuation and then pump those shares”

    Well executed deep dive on this one, Wolf.

    The troubling thing is that a lot of IPOs use the “small float” technique to create what are more-or-less illusory market caps (to generate buzz/attract subsequent suckers).

    It has been a while since I did an analysis of the trailing 100 US IPOs but many times over the last 20 years, there were periods where just 10%-20% of shares got floated at a typical IPO.

    Not .3% (like here) but if only 10% get floated at IPO, *9 times* as many share buyers/suckers have to be rounded up/suckered in to truly validate the perpetually ballyhooed (but essentially mythical) “market cap”.

    That’s why share prices can evaporate so quickly post-IPOs…it is *hard* to find 9x the number of real-cash-money-buyers willing to share the identical valuation hallucination.

    • GBC says:

      “There is nearly no public float. Only 0.3% (or 7.17 million) of the company’s 2.307 billion shares are traded. The remaining 99.7% of the shares (2.30 billion shares) are held by entities that are wholly owned by founder….”

      Doesn’t that say it all?

      This is a meme stock, trading in a meme stock never makes sense considering fundamentals. The founder has made big capital commitments, assuming he fulfils them the company has some runway, not that this brings reason to the trading. But is the situation that serious? Foolish, but in the big picture not a big threat to anything.

      • Apple says:

        Can’t be a memestock. I have seen no mention of this stock on Wallstreetbets.

        This is just standard stock price manipulation by insiders.

        • Thunder says:

          There are some comments and if these inveterate gamblers think it stinks, then it will sink.
          There is a full recall BTW on all vehicles delivered in the USA. The move came after the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said 999 of VinFast’s VF 8 vehicles suffered a software error in the dashboard display that prevented critical safety information from being shown and “may increase the risk of a crash”.

    • Frengineer says:

      Wait I thought crypto legitimized the practice

  9. Random guy 62 says:

    I’m a middle millennial so I am somewhere between understanding internet culture and being a clueless old guy. I occasionally scroll through Reddit and Snapchat and the gram. I am seeing more and more posts semi-joking about money “not being real” these days.

    This stock seems emblematic of that mentality. I have personally lost a lot of faith in our stock market and economic system in the last few years. The whole thing is starting to just feel…silly. It’s a wazie. It’s a woozie. It’s not real.

    • bulfinch says:

      I’d say the value for anything real seems to be shrinking. It’s unnerving to reflect on for too long.

      • Carlos says:

        This is especially true in housing.

        The value of having a roof over your head has been blown away by the value of using a house as a way for speculators to mint money “risk-free” because “housing always go up.”

        • Bobber says:

          Housing took off because of speculation, but the root cause was money printing. The Fed embarked on an insane money printing regime the past 15 years, thinking there would be no consequences. They thought asset price inflation was not inflation for some odd reason.

          Unfortunately, Fed leadership still doesn’t get it. They still hold onto Bernanke’s MMT strategy, thinking asset inflation and a wealth effect are legitimate goals. Until they outlaw money printing, this Fed cannot be trusted to do the right thing for the medium or long term.

        • kam says:

          Financializing the Economy has burned out the engine. Most of the U.S. GDP is Government and Services. Home owner rent, escorts, gambling, drugs, the list is endless.

        • Carlos says:

          Kind of funny to think that the surge in house prices was caused by the Fed money printing as a root cause.

          The Fed has printed $5T since COVID, then about $600 billion “un-printed”. While that alone is an economic atrocity that far eclipses anything in modern history, it does not nearly account for how obscenely assets have ballooned.

          Housing values alone have surged $20-30T since COVID beginning. It takes some mighty voodoo economics for $5T to magically turn into $20-30T like that.

          And that’s not even to mention the $30T insta-gains in the US stock market, $3T in the crypto Ponzi, plus trillions more in the precious metals bubble.

          Where, oh where did all that “wealth” come from?

        • joe2 says:

          The total value of all houses can increase more than the money spent on houses the same as the total value of all VinFast stock is set on the margin.

          Leveraged margins are the air in the balloon of the US financial system. 3rd party risk is the pin.

        • Bobber says:

          Carlos, an increase in money supply is subject to a multiplier. Fractional reserve banking is one reason. Plus, higher money supply feeds massive asset price inflation and speculation as the excess money supply is passed around like a hot potato. The x increase in money supply leads to a 4x increase in asset values, or more.

        • Carlos says:

          joe2 and Bobber,

          If what you are saying is truly the case, that an increase in money supply is multiplied and value is created on the margin, then we have discovered the financial equivalent of a perpetual motion machine.

          We print $5T, we get $65T+ in wealth gain. What an amazing discovery indeed: some consumer inflation being a small price to pay for achieving $300 sq/ft property values in rural Ohio and 35 P/E ratio on the S&P. Print, baby, print!

          If only we were so blessed. One important tell that this is not the case is the nuclear winter happening in the housing market, *not* because the money floating around has been absorbed, but instead because mortgage rates nearly tripled from 2.75 to 7.5 percent. T-bills rising to 5.5% and 10Y bonds are 4.2%, while the rental cap rate is at ~3.5%.

          In other words, the capacity and the profitability for leveraging the margin (and thus the demand) has collapsed, despite all that QE money still floating out there.

          Yes, this mayhem is partially caused by the increase in cash money from QE, but it is also due to the debt/liquidity multiplier itself (as you hinted). My argument is that the manipulation of this multiplier during COVID is the primary factor here.

          Remember all the liquidity stops were pulled during COVID. There was ZIRP, dropping the reserve rate at banks to 0, the endless moratoriums (some still in effect today), the near-endless stimulus and relief payments (PPP was used as income to apply for loans!), lockdowns that diverted service spending into housing – and perhaps most significant – misplaced hyperinflation *fears* and the social mania of “housing, stocks, and crypto go to the moon” that lit a fire under people’s asses to dump their savings accounts en masse into risky assets (stocks, crypto) and assets that only appear low-risk on the surface (houses, precious metals), aka “consensual hallucination.”

          That all counts for something – dare I say most of it. The $65T is indeed not a sign of wealth creation, nor is it even inflation – it is a bubble, the GOAT bubble.

          The situation is so sensitive, and it could all change very quickly. If that does occur, it’s going to be absolutely shocking to a lot of people.

        • HowNow says:

          Carlos, I agree and think you’ve made the best diagnosis. That ZIRP was the main cause of the inflation.

        • joe2 says:


          Yep. Asset inflation set by a few recent sales is not wealth. Or maybe better put, the fiat number assigned at a sale when there is a flood of free fiat, is not wealth. Just a shift in the norm whereas wealth is a positive disparity in ownership. Like shifting the white balance on a camera and saying the scene got darker or lighter.

          Unless everything is shifted equally – sales, pay, interest rates – it gets unbalanced (increased homelessness, crime) and eventually resets to a mutually sustainable level. And just as your house gained fiat from 3rd parties, it loses fiat.

          To really overreach an analogy, a gradual ramp function into an equal impedance can be a stable change in equilibrium. But the high frequency components of a step function lead to ringing and overshoot and instability.

          Just my 2 cents.

        • Natron says:

          Please stop conflating Value with PRICE.

          They are not the same.

      • Pilot Doc says:

        “Real” always has value because it is necessary for survival: food, energy, gold, housing, infrastructure, skills, transportation, land, and commodities.

        They fluctuate, but will always be in demand. Tech is here to stay but constantly changes because it primarily exists to make access to “real” things more convenient.

        Don’t confuse the manipulation of markets and fraud in “real” things with the things themselves.

        I only own “real” things and have done very well. I have no worries because I have no debt and don’t care about fraudulent paper values. Own the THINGS themselves. It’s what the wealthy do. The rest is speculation, not investment.

        I am NOT saying you can’t or shouldn’t make money trading in “real” thing markets. However, when you do, you necessarily adopt certain paradigms controlled by wealthy people who actually OWN the assets.

        All you ever own is the paper, the promise, or the fiat until you redeem them for the “real” thing itself.

        Why do I read here everyday? Excellent data on “real” thing trends.

        Everyone is unique, but most simply do what everyone else is doing and most of the time, it works ok.

        • HowNow says:

          Yes, it works. That’s why humans are tribal – it works. Outliers usually die off if they leave or are kicked out of a tribe. Similar to baboons, if they leave the pack, they’re not likely to survive. Conformity works wonders.

        • kam says:

          Aug 26, 2023 at 4:53 pm
          Kind of funny to think that the surge in house prices was caused by the Fed money printing as a root cause.

          The Fed has printed $5T since COVID, then about $600 billion “un-printed”. While that alone is an economic atrocity that far eclipses anything in modern history, it does not nearly account for how obscenely assets have ballooned.

          Housing values alone have surged $20-30T since COVID beginning. It takes some mighty voodoo economics for $5T to magically turn into $20-30T like that.

          And that’s not even to mention the $30T insta-gains in the US stock market, $3T in the crypto Ponzi, plus trillions more in the precious metals bubble.

          Where, oh where did all that “wealth” come from?

          Answer: Because prices are determined at the margin. 100% of the housing stock is not traded daily. And because of Fractional Reserve Banking.
          All of this is old Economic Fact. And the money printers know it.

    • Einhal says:

      Nobody knows what the value of anything is if the currency can be printed by unelected officials with no accountability.

      And that explains why a lot of people seem to have “given up.” You work to make money and afford things. When you don’t know what that money is worth, and when you can’t afford the things that people traditionally could with such a job, you tend to give up.

      In my opinion, that explains some of the issues with the labor market.

      It’s going to take a lot for our leaders to restore faith.

    • MM says:

      This comment is spot-on – I seee the same mentality in my circles.

      Combination of inflation mentality and stock market irrationality, imo.

    • Burt Reynolds Wrap says:

      I concur with this…………..
      The intentional debasement of our currency through a shock event called a pandemic and the associated money giveaways (PPP, Federal / State / municipal spending), forbearance (student loans, rent, mortgages), speculation (real estate, crypto, stocks), in the last few yeas has put morons and me-first types on par with educated hard workers who plan, save, seek independence, and take responsibility for their own actions. I think it’s safe to make the claim that our general financial system in this country is largely what dictates the major incentives and rewards for the people as individuals (which in itself is probably the source of the problem). It makes sense to me that such a rapid change will lead to disillusionment due to relevance and standards being lost for so many basic functions of society, especially since it’s obvious that the direction it has gone has favored those who are above average in dishonesty, pretentiousness, materialism, ‘group-think’, irresponsible parenting, and shamelessness.

    • Spiceoflife says:

      Same boat. Same millennial age. Money is some sort of mythical nonsense. Somehow it buys groceries and pays rent but to get more of it at scale you need to join some pipeline of asset bubbling from Zirp or vinfast schenanigans. I know very little about the finance world except what wolf and a few other places write. But honestly feel like this kind of action is damn near fraudulent. Maybe I’ll feel less that way when/if the market forces fix all this crap with a real price.

      • HowNow says:

        Spiceoflife, you’re giving the “market” too much credit. It’s a trading post; it doesn’t have physical laws or some kind of “value morality”. It doesn’t “correct” – it just keeps on keeping on.
        Mystical belief in the market is a contagion, like COVID, a pandemic. Vinfast is a symptom.

    • MussSyke says:

      It’s all hocus pocus, smoke and mirrors. But you can’t win if you don’t play the game.

  10. kiers says:

    hmmm Pham Nhat Vuong better follow my advice ( I am a highly paid management consultant with poison Ivy on my degrees ):

    Issue a tweet, worded exactly as follows:

    “Considering taking Vin private. $1.5 billion funding secured. ”

    Based on my estimation, this text mantra can do wonders for corporate performance. This advice is free.

    • Gattopardo says:

      ^ Underrated comment, especially given news about the class action suit vs the wannabe Tony Stark.

  11. Ted T. says:

    They should go to Softbank for funding. Those guys will buy anything.

  12. Dick says:

    Diamond Hands ya’ll…. Diamond Hands. Bahahaha. Sorry wolf, I’m in the cheap seats and I snickered a little. :)

  13. Zard says:

    The problem is NOT VinFast but the whole Wall Street in general. What the heck! Who would pump this stock to this level? MC is more than GM and Ford combined!!! Don’t Wall Street look in the mirror and realize how a freaking mess of a world they are building/creating? I just don’t get it. Nothing good is coming out of this.

    • Depth Charge says:

      Weimar Boy Powell printed too much – WAY too much. This is what you get. This is speculation on a whole ‘nother level.

    • Einhal says:

      I don’t think they care about the mess they leave the world as long as they have theirs. It’s a short-sighted mentality, however, as you can’t have a stable society with no middle class.

      • HowNow says:

        Another pronouncement from Einhal that completely ignores thousands of years of civilization.

        • Einhal says:

          What kind of idiocy is this? Are the Dark Ages now what we’re aspiring to? Are you looking to recreate the feudal system here in America?

        • BobC says:

          You might be forgetting that the American proletariat is very heavily armed…

  14. Carlos says:

    This makes Pham Nhat Vuong something like the 4th richest man in the world, ahead of Gates, Ellison, Buffett, Zuckie, the Google bros, and the Waltons.

    Funny how the world of “personal net worth” works.

  15. Mr. Richter, thanks much for shining the flashlight in the dark on this kind of stuff. The question I have is, “who would actually buy into this?” No float (at all) ridiculous metrics on any estute professional’s barometer of same. Oy vay! If it weren’t so true, I’d say unbelievable!

    Exceedingly well identified and presented Sir. As always, top-shelf stuff man.

  16. Gattopardo says:

    If only that thing could be shorted. Might be a rough ride for awhile, but 99% gain somewhere along the line.

    • Thomas Curtis says:

      Yeah, that is the question, if there are shares to borrow?

      • andy says:

        “Go ahead! Do! Sell it short. And invite me to your funeral.”

        – Remenisences of a Stock Operator

        You want to short something, short Nvidia. Just don’t borrow any shares.

    • Bobber says:

      Wall Street has sure-fire ways to screw you if you buy this stock long or sell it short. Best to just stay away and let idiots be idiots.

  17. Maynard G Keynes says:

    Another ( albeit excellently written) report not found at stock market bottoms

  18. Island Teal says:

    As soon as SoftBank bites it will be time for Kathy from ARK to somehow get on the bandwagon with a piece and then it’s off to the races.💸🎉🤡💸🎉🤡💸🎉😜😜

  19. Thomas Curtis says:

    Thanks Wolf,

    I may take a ‘flyer’ short tomorrow.

    • Ted T. says:

      Read the article again.

    • Wolf Richter says:

      Shorting this stock, if you even can, is suicidal. The float is way too small. It can jump 100% in one day.

      Put options would be less risky, but you may not be able to get any puts either.

      • Gattopardo says:

        Patience will likely make a short work if it collapses fast enough. But 1) There will be no shares to borrow, or almost none. No big asset managers likely hold any, and that’s where more shares are lent from. 2) Even if you could locate shares, the borrow rate will extremely high, like greater than 100% annual rate. So a good chunk of that gain when it tanks will be eaten up in fees. Even worse if it doesn’t tank, you’re losing on the short AND the exorbitant borrow cost.

      • JX says:

        it takes weeks for options to become available after ipo/spac.

        premium will be super high for this.

        it’s a gamble either way (puts or calls, buying or selling).

  20. Noodles says:

    So where is the SEC ?

    I though they were supposed to be something of a regulatory agency that has something to do with financial instruments such as stocks or were they too busy sticking their noses into Mr Trump and his SPAC for months on end and delaying it………………………

    • Wolf Richter says:

      1. The SEC steps in only after something collapses.

      2. Given that the company used a top global law firm, I’m pretty sure that they got everything down pat and covered all their bases. So if someone complains, they can say, see this paragraph here, we told you so, we warned you about it, it’s your own fault.

      • Cas127 says:

        Caveat Emptor…you were warned…see…

        Paragraph 7133 (of 128,345).

        Subsection W.

        As defined by Pages 111, 365, and 666 of Definitional Appendix…G.

        So, if you are just too lazy to read…there is nothing we can do for you.


        • Wolf Richter says:

          LOL. That’s what I meant.

        • 91B20 1stCav (AUS) says:

          …pop, pop, pop that smoke…

          may we all find a better day.

        • Frithiof Andreas Jensen says:

          So, if you are just too lazy to read…there is nothing we can do for you

          ChatGPT is aquite adept at reading long, deadly boring, text and condensing them into spiffy managerial bullet points.

          You have to prompt it, to set the scene, something like:

          “You are a highly skilled forensic accountant who is specialising in stock fraud. Using your deep insights, please list the five most serious of your concerns within the following prospectus:

          The frauds, will of course, also use AI to obfuscate the concerns.

    • JimL says:

      Why would the SEC get involved here? Yes there is tons of absolute absurdity involved here, but so far no one has pointed out any securities laws being broken.

      As for the Trump SPAC, those con men should have used better lawyers.

    • Thunder says:

      Gary Gensler…. are you serious, He has his hands full with Buttcoins and the Tether Co. printing up the shortfalls. Counterfeit is still Counterfiat (sic)

  21. Bobby Dale says:

    I wonder if @SECgov ever reads from this site

  22. Brant Lee says:

    Too bad they couldn’t get this stock into the Dow 30 or Nasq before the bounce to show how well the markets are doing. The financial news hosts would be peeing themselves.

  23. Imposter says:

    Just think how far we’ve come in just a few years,….in all the hype, can’t find even one mention of the words “block chain”…or maybe I just missed it.

    Guess there must be some newer signal for Pavlov’s dogs.

    Your designation of “consentual hallucination” is in full force and effect.

    Are you taking bets on how many weeks before:
    A: VFS hits your imploded stocks list (officially) and…
    B: VFS hits bankruptcy court.

    Much better odds betting on A and B than on VFS.

    • Publius says:

      AI has supplanted block-chain. I can’t wait to dine at restaurants that only serve AI-written recipes!

    • Frithiof Andreas Jensen says:

      Block Chain is long done. It is “Small Modular Reactor’s” and “Fusion” these days.

  24. Mark says:

    As usual Wolf – another homerun. I’m recommending you to head up
    the SEC and, when not doing that, be the chief financial adviser to the
    morons that run this government.

    • HowNow says:

      Mark, are you complaining about there not being enough (drum roll) “regulation”?? There are many on this commentary that want to “get the govt. off your back”. Anti-regulators! Oh, the horror…

      • 91B20 1stCav (AUS) says:

        …careful, How, you’re stepping onto the thin ice (with heated shoes) of: ‘…laws for thee, but not for me…’. -best.

        may we all find a better day.

  25. Imposter says:

    Are these schemes getting wilder? Wonder how much of the meme investor cash gets funnelled into, and disappears among Related parties of VinGroup JSC via borrowing and lending agreements that unfortunately will be (so sorry) uncollectable by the Debtor when the VFS bankruptcy gets filed.

    I’m betting few if any of these entities end up as Debtors but most will be on the Creditor’s list. (Sorry, I must be getting to be a real curmudgeon).

    Hopefully you will keep your sharp eye on this one and have future updates. Be interesting to follow this one down the drain. It might be yet another short but insightful journey into the land of Imploded Stocks.

    Related parties: (from SEC)
    Pham Nhat Vuong Member of the Board of Directors
    Vingroup JSC Ultimate Parent
    Vietnam Investment Group Joint Stock Company (“VIG”)
    Asian Star Trading & Investment Pte. Ltd. (“Asian Star”)
    VinES Energy Solutions JSC (“VinES JSC”)
    Vinbus Ecology Transport Services Limited Liability Company (“Vinbus Ecology Transport Services LLC”)
    Vincom Retail JSC (“Vincom Retail JSC”)
    Vincom Retail Operation Company Limited (“Vincom Retail Operation LLC”)
    VIN3S JSC Entity under common control
    Vinhomes Industrial Zone Investment JSC (“VHIZ JSC”)
    Vinhomes JSC Entity under common control
    Vinsmart Research and Manufacture JSC (“Vinsmart JSC”)
    Green and Smart Mobility Joint Stock Company (“GSM JSC”)
    VinCSS Internet Security Services Limited Liability Company (“VinCSS”)
    Vinpearl JSC Entity under common control
    VinFast Lithium Battery Pack Limited Liability Company (“VinFast Lithium Battery Pack LLC”)

  26. crazytown says:

    I hope the next article is about Better. com – down 90% on IPO day LOL

  27. Ed says:

    Spikes like this are often due to a lack of float. Prices can rise rapidly on very little demand. Think of it as a long squeeze instead of a short squeeze.

    Note that most holders of the original SPAC chose to redeem. That took most of the existing stock out of the market. I suspect that new shares are currently restricted and can’t trade.

  28. Stephan says:

    This Stuff Would Be Hilarious if it Weren’t so SCARY, and it’s so scary in its resemblance to the the period of 2021 and early 2022 where stuff like this poped up almost daily. Is this a sign of times of to come? May god bless America :)

  29. Rosarito Dave says:

    Wolf so…. the float is only 7.17 million of the company’s 2.307 billion shares. Do the owners of the other 2.3B shares have to file before they can sell any of those shares into the market? I used to work for a public Oil & Gas company named Great American Resources (GAR) based in San Diego in 1987. It turned out they were selling unregistered units (stock shares and warrants) in order to keep up their high dividend in what was a Ponzi scheme. One day we showed up for work, the doors were locked and they’d moved everything out overnight.

    What’s to prevent some owners from selling 100,000 shares here and there. I know my lack of knowledge about this sort of thing is showing…

    • Wolf Richter says:

      The entities have to disclose any sales for sure. I don’t know enough about the legal details to know if they have to file in advance of the sale. But if VinFast wants to raise cash for itself by selling shares, it has to file for a follow-on stock offering.

  30. Stephen Waters says:

    Wolf – another really good post. There are at least a couple ways to make money with SPAC’s:
    1) I have purchased shares of a SPAC prior to a merger with a company that I liked. I sold half the stock when the stock doubled after the IPO. I had to pay capital gains, but otherwise the shares of stock I kept were free.
    2) Sell stock short after the IPO when the stock overpriced. I have not done this as I do not like the risk, and doubt if you could do this with VinFast.
    Thanks again for all your insight!

  31. Bobber says:

    Ernst & Young just paid $100M to the SEC for cheating on CPA ethics exams, after transparent attempt’s to deny it.

    Large law firms and CPA firms cannot be trusted to do the right thing any more. We put way too much faith in these industries. Until they tighten the ethics, they need to be highly regulated, or split up.

    • Depth Charge says:

      There is no more rule of law in the US. The fish rots from the head.

      • HowNow says:

        Not exactly true, DC. Fish rot from the internal organs first. But, I get your point. We’re watching the rot, starting in Georgia.

  32. Anthony A. says:

    I wonder if the VinFast manufacturing plant in North Carolina will actually be be built? Ground was broken to build the 150,000 car per year plant.

    “VinFast’s manufacturing facility will be built at the Triangle Innovation Point in Chatham County, North Carolina. Covering an area of approximately 1,800 acres, VinFast’s factory is designed to reach a capacity of 150,000 vehicles per year in phase 1. The factory will consist of two main areas: electric vehicle production and assembly. The complex will also house supplementary supplier businesses.

    The project has received basic permits to begin Phase 1 construction. When the manufacturing complex commences operations, VinFast’s factory will create an ecosystem of suppliers and help generate thousands of new jobs.”

    • 91B20 1stCav (AUS) says:

      …what’s that thing Foxconn is doing in Wisconsin???

      may we all find a better day.

  33. cobo says:

    Investors need to be rounded up and put in camps where they can be treated for mass psychosis. They are obviously a danger to themselves and to others.

  34. dang says:

    A great article that dissects the corpus dillectie,

    one more SPAC hustle, indicates that monetary policy is far too lax.

    Powell seemed unperturbed by the pending collapse of at least four historical financial bubbles.

    • dang says:

      It is not the everyday people, organizing in order to establish at the minimum, a humane work place that pays a living wage and family benefits. The people that built this culture, the one’s that all that advertising is trying to sell too,

      Management is organized, why shoudn’t the working people be organized.

      The strikers I believe have a legitimate beef, less they are unlikely too not sign the meager contract that was offered by the management organization.

      The battle between the profit margin and paying your essential employees a living wage and family benefits.

      • dang says:

        The pall over the villagers, who realized that we were the fodder that fed the sacrifice.

        like saint’s expiring unremarkably

        • dang says:

          This transaction is a symptom of a certain recklessness that has haunted the financial markets this past 15 years.

          A pricing disequilibrium in a number of markets that will be resolved, one way or another.

          Is the Fed going to finance the current inflation or will they apply the brake. The uncertainty is what makes a ball game.

        • 91B20 1stCav (AUS) says:

          Dang, dang! Incredibly eloquent…

          may we all find a better day.

  35. breamrod says:

    greed and fear folks! that’s what drives markets. We are way overbought in the greed zone and have been since 2021. Since society seems to have lost its mind it’s not surprising. I’m sure eventually something comes along and changes this mentality. When is anybody guess.

  36. David S says:

    I will be the contrarian on this topic I guess. I live about 10 miles from the future VinFast plant in NC. I fully admit the initial run and finances were shabby, Tesla has and continues to have serious quality issues also if anyone tracks them. My own contrarianism is based on even if this initial venture does fail, the value of the work and infrastructure that has been committed (with a lot of taxpayer support!) will give this enterprise some lasting value. The location of this e-vehicle plant will provide value to Vinfast if they can turn it into an ongoing enterprise or maybe being bought out by others like Toyota who is also building a giant battery facility about 1 hour north from it. BTW, Wolfspeed is also building a chip manufacturing facility that supposedly focuses on automotive applications about 30 minutes away also. Barring a spectacular collapse of the entire electric vehicle industry, the Vinfast investments should pay off in one way or another.

    • rusell1200 says:

      If it ever gets going, that plant is going to be like the Randy Parton Theater fiasco on super-roids.

      Mind you, RPT wasn’t big by the absolute numbers. There was the somewhat sane Dell plant they built in 2005 with ~$280MM of State incentives that was shut in 2010. How much of that they got back, I don’t know.

    • 91B20 1stCav (AUS) says:

      …well, adding this to a post a few days ago here in Wolf’s most-excellent establishment, it sounds like NC is the place to be for taxpayer subsidization of big biz OR big sports…

      may we all find a better day.

  37. stegelberg says:

    Up 25% in pre-trade, market cap now 200 billion. USD.

  38. Imposter says:

    Reminds one of the good old days, way back in history, from early 2021. When $100 million “smart money” invested in HWIN.

    “This small-town N.J. deli, owned by famed wrestling coach, is valued at $100M. Wall Street is asking questions.”

    At least with HWIN, the investors might have had a small chance of a decent pastrami sandwich, but then it closed.

  39. Michael Gaff says:

    I still am happy with my 1934 Cord, my 1999 GMC pickup, my 1979 (piece of crap), Corvette, and the silly 2002 BMW, 525I.
    The BMW was a big disappointment, but I replaced the G3 computer chip in 2016.
    The BMW has been fine since I fixed the silly seat misalignment problem with a you-tube video.
    The BMW was to be scrapped because the owner didn’t want to put any more money into the car.
    He had actually asked me to help him donate the care to the Salvation Army. I bought it for $900 and have spent some $1,200 since then. (I bought the car for $900, literally minutes before it was to be crushed.)
    It runs very well, but I hate BMW’s.
    I still don’t like it, but I have been driving it.
    You lace pants clowns have no idea how to keep a car running.

    • Wolf Richter says:

      LOL. Glad to know you enjoy driving junk you “don’t like” and the “piece of crap.” Driving junk and pieces of crap has its own charm.

  40. Jeremy says:

    VFS is down to a market cap of 66 billion, and it’s only been a few days.

    Meme stocks grow up so fast these days.

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