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People look at electric vehicles at a Tesla store in Shanghai, China. Photo: Yan Daming/VCG via Getty Images

Tesla will join the S&P 500, the index's committee said on Monday.

Why it matters: After years of ineligibility, one of the most valuable U.S. companies by market cap (and the most valuable automaker in the world) is joining the main benchmark of the stock market as its biggest new member ever.

  • The move opens Tesla up to a massive investor base: roughly $11 trillion worth of investment funds that track the index.
  • Tesla would be the 10th biggest S&P 500 component, ahead of Johnson & Johnson.

Catch up quick: The company met the final requirement for eligibility — four consecutive quarters of profitability — when it reported its Q2 results in July. But the company was passed over when S&P Dow Jones Indices switched up the index's components in September.

  • Wall Street analysts speculated that the reason was because of Tesla's dependency on the sale of regulatory credits to other automakers — without which, it wouldn't be profitable on a quarterly basis.
  • Shares of Tesla, which ran up earlier this year on the expectation it would be added to the index, rose roughly 9% in after-hours trading.

Details: The move is effective on Dec. 21.

  • Because Tesla is such a massive addition to the index, the committee is still trying to figure out whether the company should be added all at once or in two separate tranches.

Go deeper

Wall Street wonders how bad it has to get

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Wall Street is working out how bad the economy will have to get for Congress to feel motivated to move on economic support.

Why it matters: A pre-Thanksgiving data dump showed more evidence of a floundering economic recovery. But the slow drip of crumbling economic data may not be enough to push Washington past a gridlock to halt the economic backslide.

Biden plans to ask public to wear masks for first 100 days in office

Joe Biden. Photo: Mark Makela/Gettu Images

President-elect Joe Biden told CNN on Thursday that he plans to ask the American public to wear face masks for the first 100 days of his presidency.

The big picture: Biden also stated he has asked NIAID director Anthony Fauci to stay on in his current role, serve as a chief medical adviser and be part of his COVID-19 response team when he takes office early next year.

What COVID-19 vaccine trials still need to do

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

COVID-19 vaccines are being developed at record speed, but some experts fear the accelerated regulatory process could interfere with ongoing research about the vaccines.

Why it matters: Even after the first COVID-19 vaccines are deployed, scientific questions will remain about how they are working and how to improve them.