Tesla's largest institutional investor just cut its stake in half

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T. Rowe Price cut its stake in Tesla in half during the fourth quarter, according to a government filing.

The international money manager owned 8.98 million Tesla shares by the end of last year, according to a filing at the Securities and Exchange Commission. The new, smaller stake represents 5.2 percent of the electric auto maker’s common shares outstanding at the end of December. The Baltimore-based fund group reported in a prior filing that it owned 17.4 million shares, or a 10.2 percent stake, as of Sept. 30.

T. Rowe Price was the electric car maker’s second-largest shareholder behind CEO Elon Musk at the end of the third quarter of 2018. The firm had $962 billion in assets under management as of Dec. 31.

Tesla shares rose almost 26 percent during the fourth quarter and were up 2.7 percent Monday afternoon, above $314 per share.

T. Rowe Price declined to comment for this story, while Tesla did not immediately responded to CNBC’s request for comment.

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