Perhaps an even greater challenge for Intuitive Machines might be convincing Wall Street.

Intuitive Machines went public last year through a merger with a shell company. The price of its shares, which trade under the symbol LUNR, shot up to about $40 one year ago, but fell a month later and have yet to fully rebound. The stock price jumped this month, to more than $10, as Odysseus headed to the moon, but this week, it fell again, to under $6, down more than 30 percent since the landing.

The company’s stock price is volatile because company insiders are barred from trading its stock for a certain length of time after the company goes public. That leaves the value of shares more vulnerable to knee-jerk reactions based on headlines, said Andres Sheppard, an analyst at Cantor Fitzgerald. Retail investors appeared to have been spooked after it was announced that the spacecraft landed sideways, dragging down the stock price about 34 percent on Monday, the first trading day after the announcement.

“We strongly disagree with that, but obviously our voice is not the loudest at the moment,” Mr. Sheppard said. His firm raised its forecast for Intuitive Machines after the landing.

That the spacecraft landed at all is a good sign for the company, Mr. Sheppard said. One of its two major revenue streams is contracts to deliver cargo to the moon for NASA and private clients. It can make about $130 million per mission, and the landing — regardless of the orientation of the spacecraft — paves the way for more missions in the future.

“It’s transformational for the business,” said Austin Moeller, an analyst at Canaccord Genuity. “It was a very important moment for the company to be able to demonstrate its technical acumen.”

At the news conference, Mr. Altemus was also bullish.

“I’m emboldened for the future of the U.S. economy.” Mr. Altemus said. “I’m emboldened for the future of sustained human presence on the moon, and I’m emboldened for the future of Intuitive Machines.”

J. Edward Moreno contributed reporting.


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Credit: NYTimes.com

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