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Once upon a time there was an electric car company whose stock traded at nearly 1,200 times its earnings under generous accounting rules — it actually lost $74 million in 2013 — with a CEO who could sell igloos in a desert. Tesla Motors is that company and Elon Musk is that CEO. But at this point in the tale, the average investor would be well-advised against jumping on the supercharged bandwagon. After reporting a $16-million adjusted loss for the fourth quarter last week, Tesla shares soared more than 8% Thursday before retreating slightly Friday to close the week at $209.60.

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