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  • Busting The Myth About Chinese Solar Panels [View article]
    Nice article Jonathan;
    But I would not relate efficiency with "quality". There are international institutions such as TÜV Rheinland that do quality and performance testing for solar modules.

    My research has shown SPWR to be the highest in both efficiency and quality, but TSL, CSIQ, JASO, etc. are catching up in both efficiency and quality. From an investors viewpoint the cost per watt and cost road-map are very important and TSL, CSIQ, JASO have a much lower cost per watt. FSLR may have the best cost road map, but quality issues may still be present.
    Jun 17 04:21 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Pengrowth Energy Offers Monthly Income And Trades At A Large Discount To NAV [View article]
    Today from Bloomberg about Keystone:

    “I think it’s going to happen,” said Representative Jim Moran, a Virginia Democrat and member of the House’s Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition. “The odds look pretty strong right now.”
    May 3 12:13 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A Final Dead Cat Bounce Before The Big Crash In Canadian Solar? [View article]
    Another important positive for all the solar firms is the continued rise in NG prices in the US. NG prices are now double from just a year ago. The price of electricity is one of the key drivers to solar economics in the US.

    My firm can can make profits with residential solar projects at a fully installed price of $3 a watt. In many parts of the US, that means these projects can create their own electricity at around .075 per kwh. Currently most of the US the rates are much higher than this, making solar a profitable investment for residential installations.

    Now add in this recent surge in NG prices which is a key component to electricity prices - especially during the peaks of energy use during the day since NG power plants are peaking plants....

    For solar, the price of NG is the single most important vector to track IMHO...
    May 1 07:42 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Coal Faces Tremendous Long-Term Problems [View article]
    Longer term would be 3-10 years out - many variables to consider so timing is difficult. The US coal producers can't export coal to rest of world for 2 reasons - lack on infrastructure(no new rail lines to the west coast), And the cost to extract - The PRB will run out of cheap coal in 7 years.....
    Apr 29 10:55 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Coal Faces Tremendous Long-Term Problems [View article]
    "renewable energes (wind and solar) up-front construction too high cost and is completely depend on politics. "

    This is false. I will quickly discuss the economics of solar. Solar is best used as a distributed on-site, behind the meter resource. Current pricing for installed solar is around $2.75 a watt(I just did a 7kw res project for less than this). This equates to generating electricity at around 6-8 cents a kwh. These figures depend on location, and project dynamics, etc.

    So if a residential or commercial user is paying more than .07 a kwh - solar is cheaper than the grid, and on a LCOE is WAY cheaper then the grid. In most of the US, the electric prices are higher than .07 a kwh.

    Solar would not yet make sense as a centralized power plants to replace larger coal/NG power plants. Those coal/NG plants can produce electricity well under .04 a kwh.

    The Author here is correct. Coal has no long term future in the US. Wind/solar are one main reason - Coal plants are base load power - you can't turn them down or up - only NG peaking plants do this cheaply and efficiently.

    Also not mentioned by the author is the current and future cost to extract and deliver coal. We have run out of cheap coal in the US, except for one basin in Wyoming - the PRB. The PRB will be depleted of cheap coal as well in 7 years at current consumption levels. We have mines coal to power our country for 100 years, and only started using NG to power the US over the last 15-20 years?

    The longer term economics heavily favor NG over coal.
    Apr 29 10:41 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Chesapeake Energy: Biggest Beneficiary Of Higher Natural Gas Prices [View article]
    Many energy investors don't really understand hedging, and more importantly how these financial instruments affect a firms valuation.

    The mark to market losses from CHK hedges are mostly likely - non-cash losses, and not used by analysts in EPS calculations since the hedging losses or profits are "one-time" items. One can argue this point as many E&P firms hedge all the time....

    You say CHK is 45% hedge at $3.63 - for how many years? Maybe just 2013? how about 2014, 2015,...2018 and beyond?

    CHK current NG assets will be producing sell-able NG for 10-15 years in the future - so now that NG has doubled in the past 12 months - what happens to those future cash flows?

    Using a DCF model, CHK intrinsic value has improved about 35% due to the increased price of it main product NG.
    Apr 26 10:51 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Pengrowth Energy And Penn West Petroleum: Not In-Sync With Oil & Gas Prices [View article]
    Take a few moments and go to any stock screener and plot the 5 year stock performance for PGH, or PWE. You will see a nasty 70-75% slide. Then do a graph compare against other E&P firms like CHK, ECA, ERF, DVN, etc....

    You will see all these firms tied to NG have fallen in a similar fashion. The Canadian firms have fallen slightly more due to a weaker economy, and lack of infrastructure.

    Once again in this case management has very little to do with SP declines of their firms - it all about the price of NG, and economic activity and infrastructure. This gives one an opportunity IMHO to buy theses equities at a discount.
    Apr 9 09:14 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Pengrowth Energy And Penn West Petroleum: Not In-Sync With Oil & Gas Prices [View article]
    PGH has stated that it will maintain the .04 monthly divy and fund their new oil project. PGH mngt also stated that stock buybacks are unlikely unless they get more $$ than anticipated in planned asset sales.

    My take;
    As long as NG prices stay above $3 mcf, the divy is safe. I would actually rather have them cut or eliminate the divy and use those funds for stock buybacks....
    Apr 8 03:55 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Pengrowth Energy And Penn West Petroleum: Not In-Sync With Oil & Gas Prices [View article]
    PGH and PWE stock price declines have very little to do with management, or their respective drilling results as some suggest.

    The main driver for the negative performance has been the sharp decline in natural gas prices from over $6 down to $2. Also these firms in Canada can not fully realize NG and oil prices due to lack of Canadian infrastructure. The Canadian economy has also been weak.

    Now that NG is above 4, we should see their cash flows improve and the stock prices move up. Also the entire industry has seen low valuations, CHK, DVN, ECA, etc. are all near 52 week lows.....
    Apr 8 02:37 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Natural Gas Production Drops From Record, Coal-To-Gas Switching Demand Evaporates [View article]
    The $3 coal to gas switching is the authors estimate, not reality. Every power plant has it's own $ switching point. In the eastern US were App coal is much more expensive then PRB coal, the switching point can be over $3.5. So there is no one switching point - it is regional and local.....
    Mar 5 07:39 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • New Era Of Energy Abundance: Nat Gas Production Set A Record Last Year, Bringing Inflation-Adjusted Prices To A 17-Year Low [View article]
    Starting in November 2012 US production has flattened and now is going lower. Prices will rise throughout 2013 as a result of this lower supply of natural gas.
    Mar 2 08:57 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Pengrowth Energy: A 53% Discount To Book Value Plus A 12% Yield [View article]
    We would see the SP go down a bit with no divy, but once the market started seeing these very accretive buybacks, the SP would recover IMHO. Then we would start seeing increases to funds from op's(FFO) per share which is the main driver for future dividends and future NAV per share......
    Feb 27 12:09 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Pengrowth Energy: A 53% Discount To Book Value Plus A 12% Yield [View article]
    Nice recap of PGH. My firm runs an energy fund, and PGH is the only loser over the past year. IMHO, the reasons for PGH's decline is as follows:

    1) Entire energy sector is out of favor - most equities are near 52 week lows( CHK, ECA, APA, DVN, APC, PGH, ERF, PWE, etc..)
    2) Weakening Canadian economy
    3) Weak NG pricing
    4) High possible future Debt ratio's
    5) Possibility of future dividend cut
    6) Lack of pipeline infrastructure

    My personal view is I would like to see the dividend cut and have PGH use that capital to repurchase shares. Buying your own shares at large discounts to NAV is highly accretive to shareholder value(look at ACAS). I am looking forward to Fridays earnings announcement and conference call.

    Feb 27 10:47 AM | 12 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Armour Residential: How It Manages To Pay A 16% Yield And The Risks Of Investing In It [View article]
    The past one year total return for ARR is 18.82% as of Sept 12th 2011 to today. The price as of 9/12/2011 was 7.44. This price as of 9/12/2011 was a high point, and decreased over the following months so every day that goes by the TTM total return will just go higher...Investors collected $1.28 in divies over the past year.

    BTW - very good article on explaining the risks of owning MREIT's.
    Sep 9 11:02 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • A New Use for Solar Energy - Highway Right of Way [View article]
    Thanks all for the responses.
    The wildlife slant in this issue was two fold. One is the idea of not disturbing public lands for new solar energy development, and the other idea is that if we spend the money for the structures of solar highway projects, we could easily augment with other wildlife barriers to help eliminate wildlife/car collisions.

    The theft issue was the first negative I thought of also. These ROW systems would need be large enough so that theft could not be easy even in a large commercial vehicle. Also we could install RF devices like the home prisoners have on their ankles.....

    To all;
    My numbers about current capacity, actual eclectic produced, and solar potential along US highways, etc. are all HUGE ballpark type numbers. I did not intend as a scientific analysis. I have not found any hard core estimates on all the managed ROW on all our highways so if anyone has a link. please post. I just wanted some numbers for a starting point of discussion.

    The actual non-subsidized cost of pulv. coal power in much higher than 4-5 c. Also the distribution cost of pushing electrons for these large coal plants is a big cost. The maintenance on these plants is huge, as will cap n trade pollution taxation, etc..Once you make coal plants clean - no NOX, SOx or Mercury emmisions, then the cost doubles.

    My residential daytime electric rate is .10 kWh, and I live in a cheap, mainly coal area. the US average is .16 cents. Current non-Si solar can compete with these numbers.

    Dec 14 11:32 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment