Wednesday, October 26, 2011

First Solar Analyst Roundup (FSLR)

With five minutes to the close FSLR is up 6.61% at $46.13.
Mark Gongloff at MarketBeat does the heavy lifting:

First Solar Also Rises, But Analysts Waiting For Strategy Details

Never let it be said that First Solar doesn’t move quickly.
The company drop-kicked its CEO unceremoniously yesterday, causing a bit of a panic in the market.
Seeing the reaction, the company raced ahead to deliver third-quarter earnings this morning.
The results weren’t great — earnings came in below expectations, and the company trimmed its revenue guidance for the year. The earnings call is still not until next week, and First Solar remains tight-lipped about why it axed Rob Gillette.

But the move seemed to mollify investors a bit, and First Solar shares are up nearly 9% today, making some of the ground lost in yesterday’s 25% bloodbath.
Analysts are a little less excited.

Needham kept its “hold” rating on the company, citing pricing pressure in the solar industry:
The company again lowered full year guidance and given the magnitude of the cut, we suspect pricing pressures from c-Si competitors have started to pressure FSLR’s module prices. Given the weaker prices and the slowdown of cost reductions, we see little room for earnings upside. We see uncertainty given the current turmoil and maintain our Hold rating.
CLSA, which has an “underperform” on the stock, cut its price target to $54 (which makes you wonder why they have a “sell” rating) and echoed the warning that the business environment for First Solar is stormy...MORE