Tuesday, October 25, 2011

UPDATED: A Huge Score For Jim Chanos and the First Solar Shorts (FSLR)

Updates below
Original post:
The stock is now down 25.06% at $43.43 on 5 1/2 times average daily volume.
FSLR is consistently among the top five most shorted components of the S&P500 with 20,335,825 of the 86mil outstanding short in the last Nasdaq report.

From the WSJ's Deal Journal:
First Solar: Was Jim Chanos Right?
Investor/cranky guy Jim Chanos trashed solar energy in a public investor presentation this spring. His prediction may be playing out today.

The investor enthusiasm for green energy companies was a bubble, Chanos argued at the Ira Sohn investor conference. His presentation was called “Alternative Energy: Does Solar + Wind = Hot Air?”
Chanos’s presentation was before the very public and controversial collapse of solar-panel maker Solyndra. And today, First Solar has spooked investors with the unexpected departure of CEO Rob Gillette.  First Solar shares are sinking about 20% in recent trading.

Chanos singled out the possibility of management defection at First Solar, a call that looks pretty prescient right now. Here’s what Chanos said...MORE
I wrote the following post in April 2011while the Chinese markets were still holding up. Now they've collapsed too.
Jim Chanos (!) Spanks First Solar (!) FSLR)
Maybe Jim is just crabby about his China short.
Regardless, he is not someone you want trashing your stock. FSLR is trading down $3.23 at $141.50 after trading as low as $137.18.
From Tech Trader Daily:
FSLR Down On Chanos Comments, Exec Resignation

Shares of First Solar (FSLR) are down 4% at $139.15 after short-seller Jim Chanos made negative comments about the company during an interview on CNBC this morning.

Chanos, president of hedge fund Kynikos Associates, called the company “problematic” and noted high levels of insider selling.

Also today, First Solar’s president of operations Bruce Sohn resigned.
Sohn, who oversaw manufacturing, procurement, engineering and construction operations, joined the company in 2007 shortly after its IPO....MORE
Regarding the insider selling, we've chronicled billions of dollars worth highlighting the bails by Chairmen Ahern, former BFF Goldman Sachs and the Wal*ton interests....
Ditto for this May 25 post:
"Jim Chanos Trashes Solar Energy as ‘Hot Air’" (FSLR)

"First Solar: It’s the Mystery That Makes It Taste So Bad" (FSLR)
Al Gore, No Score!: GIM Stuck with 959,075 First Solar Shares (FSLR)
What the?...First Solar CEO Out; Replaced by Chair Ahern (FSLR)