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Dana Blankenhorn

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  • Higher Mileage Cars Can Send Message to the Market [View article]
    I did a piece at my own shop today on biochar. www.danablankenhorn.co... The implications of that technology are positive for flex fuels.
    Jun 28 01:22 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is It Time to Short First Solar? [View article]
    When a company is heavily shorted, it's often a short-term buy signal, regardless of fundamentals. Any short upside surprise and you're hosed.
    Jun 28 11:53 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Solar Power Is Booming but Solar Stocks Are Not [View article]
    I firmly believe Al Gore is more important as a business leader than a political one. He still sells fear in a market that wants hope.

    But maybe he can get the revenge of James Cox. Gov. Cox lost in 1920 to Warren Harding. Went back to his job as a newspaper publisher. Ever hear of Cox Enterprises? He became that Cox. His grandkids are all billionaires.
    Jun 28 11:24 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Is It Time to Short First Solar? [View article]
    Growth in the sector is going to accelerate, not decelerate, as standards emerge for installation, as BIPV emerges, and as the price falls below $1/watt.

    How much of that will be picked up by current players remains to be seen. Manufacturing expertise matters. Getting new concepts into mass production is going to accelerate change and challenge everybody. Engineering talent needed.
    Jun 28 11:22 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Solar Power Is Booming but Solar Stocks Are Not [View article]
    Personally I'm going to put my money on abundance, not scarcity. Scarcity may work in the short term, but abundance means prosperity.

    Government policies that aim for abundance are in our economic self-interest. It's not about green as in the environment. It's about the long green.

    Oh, and the PC and Internet industries were heavily subsidized in their early years. The Space program was a massive investment in computing technology. The Internet was originally DARPAnet. Even the first computer, ENIAC, was a military purchase during WWII, the hope being it would calculate bomb trajectories.
    Jun 28 08:51 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is It Time to Short First Solar? [View article]
    Someone doesn't know history. Falling prices grow markets. Margins are always under pressure in the tech business, but we compensate with reduced costs and improved yield.

    There's no "over-capacity" in solar, and lower margins on growing sales doesn't spell lower profits.

    Besides, in a fast-growing market you don't want big bottom lines. You want players who invest ahead of that growing demand.

    I don't know if this applies to First Solar and other existing players, but I know it applies to the industry as a whole.
    Jun 28 08:15 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Is It Time to Short First Solar? [View article]
    I don't agree that First Solar should be shorted, but if the shorts have enough skin in the game that they take losses when they're wrong then go ahead.

    Markets go haywire when speculators get to play with too little cash. That's true on the way up and on the way down.
    Jun 27 05:17 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Solar Power Is Booming but Solar Stocks Are Not [View article]
    Solar is much closer to pushing through the cost of oil than of coal.

    I don't see solar as a solution for cars until we either have abundant renewable power, an excess of electricity making electric cars practical, or until we can create enough hydrogen infrastructure so fuel cell cars become practical.

    But again, you don't have to entirely replace oil, gas or coal to have a huge impact on the energy market. Just demonstrate, in a market sense, that you can and that you will, over time. Break the psychology of resource owners that prices will always go up (and that the value of what's in the ground is going up) and you'll have an enormous economic boom.
    Jun 27 05:16 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is It Time to Short First Solar? [View article]
    One thing we solar bulls tend to underestimate is the difficulty, and value, inherent in a scaled manufacturing process.

    In today's market, these trump such things as raw efficiency and raw materials cost.

    The challenge for poly silicon, for CIGS and quantum dots is to scale manufacturing the way First Solar has. I personally think manufacturing expertise is their secret sauce and can get them through multiple generations of technology.
    Jun 27 02:17 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • What Will Become of AT&T and Verizon as Copper Dies? [View article]
    Not to mention the corruption of our public discourse, which can lead to unintended consequences. www.politico.com/news/...
    Jun 27 12:23 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is It Time to Short First Solar? [View article]
    It's always time to short First Solar, it seems. Lower costs mean lower prices. The real question should be how quickly First Solar is cutting its costs relative to rivals, not oh noes costs are declining.

    Chip costs have been declining for decades, but investors have gotten used to it.
    Jun 27 12:11 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What Will Become of AT&T and Verizon as Copper Dies? [View article]
    Lobby all you want. But we will always question whether your profits are the result of hard work, or lobbying.

    In the case of VZ and T, it's clear that their profits come from lobbying, not from investment. They've gotten billions in subsidies through lobbying the government over the last decade, yet Google has, without subsidy of any kind, created a better Internet network.

    Companies that depend on lobbying for profit are bad companies to invest in over the long run.
    Jun 27 12:08 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Solar Power Is Booming but Solar Stocks Are Not [View article]
    I try to stay out of politics as much as possible. But we have fought two of our last three wars over oil, and access to oil. Three in four if you count Libya.
    Jun 27 11:11 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What Will Become of AT&T and Verizon as Copper Dies? [View article]
    I think we're agreed on that. The idea that the phone companies have captured the political system and used it to their own ends should not be in dispute.
    Jun 27 08:38 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Solar Power Is Booming but Solar Stocks Are Not [View article]
    Many developing countries, even China, now have birth rates below replacement. Prosperity has defused the population bomb.
    Jun 27 08:37 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
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