Jul. 31, 2014, 4:52 PM
- SunPower (NASDAQ:SPWR) expects Q3 revenue of $600M-$650M and EPS of $0.15-$0.35; the midpoints are below a consensus of $636.8M and $0.29. Full-year guidance is for revenue of $2.5B-$2.65B and EPS of $1.10-$1.40; the midpoints are below a consensus of $2.59B and $1.31.
- Q2 gross margin was 19.5%, down from Q1's 22% but flat Y/Y. GM is expected to fall to 17%-19% in Q3, but is also expected to be in a 19%-21% range for the whole of 2014.
- SunPower expects to recognize revenue in 2014 from 1.225GW-1.3GW of solar product sales. The company's total pipeline is at ~8.4GW - 3GW in the Americas, 2.6GW in Asia-Pac, 2GW in the Middle East/Africa, 800MW in Europe.
- The Americas were 72% of Q2 revenue, EMEA 10%, and Asia-Pac 18%. Solar products revenue totaled $237M, systems revenue $338M, and lease revenue $33M. 311MW of solar cells were produced, up from 306MW in Q1 and 296MW a year ago.
- Q2 results, PR, datasheet, slides
Jul. 31, 2014, 4:18 PM
Jul. 28, 2014, 7:59 AM
- Solar names are under pressure following the U.S. government's move to place anti-dumping duties as high as 165% percent on solar panels and cells from China.
- China condemns the action, saying "if escalating problems in the China-U.S. solar industry are ignored, in the end it will damage up and downstream industries in both countries."
- Moving sharply lower premarket: YGE -5.1%, CSIQ -4.3%, JKS -3.8%, TSL -2.7%, JASO -2.5%, SCTY -2.2%, HSOL -4.9%
- Moving up: SPWR +1.8%, FSLR +2.7%.
- ETFs: TAN, KWT
Jul. 27, 2014, 10:18 PM
- The Commerce Department has imposed preliminary anti-dumping tariffs ranging from 26%-165% on Chinese and Taiwanese solar cell/module imports. The tariffs come on top of the anti-subsidy tariffs imposed in early June, and in spite of a WTO ruling declaring U.S. solar tariffs violate global trade rules.
- Among the affected exporters,Trina (NYSE:TSL) is getting off the lightest: Between the June and July tariffs, it's dealing with a combined rate of 29.3%.
- Yingli (NYSE:YGE), Canadian Solar (CSIQ), and Hanwha (NASDAQ:HSOL) are set to pay a combined rate of 47.27%, and Suntech (NYSE:STP) a combined rate of 49.24%. ReneSola (NYSE:SOL) and JinkoSolar (NYSE:JKS) have to pay a 58.87% anti-dumping rate.
- Chinese module makers can pay 2012 tariff rates instead if they use Chinese (rather than Taiwanese) cells. Those rates are generally a little milder, often ranging from 24%-31%.
- "The tariffs in this case are so high as to prohibit basically any manufacturer from selling at a competitive price in to the U.S," says GTM Research's Shayle Kann. A final DOC ruling on the tariffs is expected around Dec. 15, and an ITC ruling on Jan. 29. (the full ruling - .pdf)
- U.S. rivals First Solar (NASDAQ:FSLR) and SunPower (NASDAQ:SPWR) stand to benefit. Their shares rose following the June tariff announcement.
- Other Chinese solar firms: JASO, CSUN, LDK
Jul. 8, 2014, 10:08 AM
- OTR Global reports the Chinese government is thinking of cutting its 2014 solar installation targets due to credit availability issues.
- The government previously set a 2014 installation target of 14GW (8GW distributed systems, 6GW utility). Deutsche has already expressed doubts about its feasibility following a soft Q1.
- U.S. and Japanese shipments have been faring better, but new DoC tariffs could take a toll on near-term Chinese sales to the former market.
- Solar stocks are lower amid a market selloff: YGE -5.3%. CSIQ -4.7%. SCTY -3.5%. FSLR -3.5%. SPWR -3.2%. JKS -4.6%. HSOL -4.4%. SOL -3.5%. DQ -3.4%. CSUN -5%. TSL -2.7%. ENPH -3%.
- Solar ETFs: KWT, TAN
- Update: OTR's note comes amid a report the Chinese government plans to hike its subsidies for power sales stemming from rooftop solar projects by up to 55%, putting their revenue (on a per-kWh basis) on par with ground-mounted projects.
Jul. 2, 2014, 9:49 AM
- Canaccord has launched coverage on SolarCity (SCTY +4.4%), SunEdison (SUNE +1.2%), Canadian Solar (CSIQ +2.3%), and RGS Energy (RGSE +4.7%) with Buy ratings.
- SunPower (SPWR +0.6%) is up slightly in spite of being started at Hold.
- Canaccord's Josh Baribeau predicts the solar industry as a whole will benefit as "financial innovation such as risk pooling, securitization, de-levering etc. continue to drive the costs of capital and system costs downward."
- Baribeau expects SolarCity ($94 PT, leading the securitization trend) to beat Street deployment estimates, and to see strong cash flow growth with the help of declining component and financing costs.
- He likes Canadian's low manufacturing costs, industry-leading commercial backlog, and relatively low Chinese sales dependence. His target is $43, or 10x 2015E EPS.
- Solar ETFs: KWT, TAN
- Previous: Deutsche upbeat on solar YieldCo potential
Jun. 18, 2014, 9:47 AM| 7 Comments
Jun. 17, 2014, 12:55 PM
- SolarCity has announced plans to build a 1GW+ module plant in NY, and to follow it up with one or more much larger facilities. Notably, the company declares (in spite of a current capacity glut) it needs to build the plants to meet long-term solar demand.
- Yingli missed Q1 estimates, but reported a healthy gross margin (thanks in part to strong Japanese sales) and reiterated full-year guidance.
- Also: Goldman is out with a bullish note, predicting rooftop solar installations will post a 40% CAGR through 2016.
- Gainers: FSLR +2.8%. SPWR +4.2%. SUNE +4.4%. JASO +8.2%. SOL +7.5%. JKS +6.5%. CSIQ +7.4%. DQ +4.2%. ASTI +3.9%. HSOL +6.9%. TSL +5.6%. ENPH +3.5%. CSUN +3.7%. RGSE +11.3% (announced a new Hawaiian deal).
- SolarCity's plans are a positive for equipment vendors GT Advanced (GTAT +1.5%) and Veeco (VECO +1.6%), each of which has seen its solar orders plummet thanks to the capacity glut.
- Solar ETFs: KWT, TAN
- Yesterday: Solar stocks rally; Deutsche upbeat on YieldCo potential
Jun. 16, 2014, 11:05 AM
- "We are becoming increasingly constructive on the solar sector as we expect further tightening of the solar supply/demand balance and expect increased investor interest driving valuation multiple expansion," says Deutsche, which last month struck a far more cautious tone on the industry.
- The firm adds it expects "the emergence of 5-6 publicly traded [solar project] YieldCos over the next 12-18 months to act as a robust growth enabler." It has upgraded SunEdison (SUNE +6.4%), which recently filed an S-1 for its TerraForm Power (TERP) YieldCo, to Buy.
- YieldCo momentum is seen growing ahead of potential 2016 U.S. solar tax credit changes, and greater international activity is expected to start in 2015, as grid parity is reached in more markets.
- Notable gainers: FSLR +3%. SPWR +4.7%. CSUN +5.2%. SOL +4.8%. RGSE +3.4%. HSOL +3.4%. YGE +3.3%. CSIQ +3.1%.
- SunPower might also be getting a lift from news of a $200M, 2-year loan program with Admirals Bank to finance U.S. residential solar projects. SunPower has already reached residential financing deals with Google and BofA/Merrill this year.
- Solar ETFs: KWT, TAN
Jun. 6, 2014, 9:34 AM
- SunPower's (SPWR -0.9%) $400M offering of convertible senior notes due 2021 features an interest rate of just 0.875%, and an initial conversion price of $48.76 - a 44% premium to current levels.
- Net proceeds are expected to total $395.3M. The offering terms are notably better than the ones Trina just received for its $150M convertible offering.
- Previous: SunPower announces $400M convertible debt offering
Jun. 4, 2014, 4:49 PM
- SunPower (SPWR) is offering $400M worth of convertible senior notes due June 2021.
- Total (TOT), which owns 60% of SunPower, has committed to buying $250M of the notes.
- Potential uses of the funds include capex, paying down existing debt, and pursuing SunPower's HoldCo strategy, under which the company is creating a solar project subsidiary that in turn could sell a stake (possibly through an IPO).
- SunEdison announced a $500M convertible offering earlier today; the majority of its proceeds will go to the company's TerraForm Power (YieldCo) spinoff.
- SunPower rose 7% in regular trading, thanks to the DOC's tariff announcement. The company had $900M in debt at the end of Q1, and $1.32B in cash/investments.
Jun. 4, 2014, 9:30 AM
- The Department of Commerce has imposed new preliminary tariffs on Chinese solar module imports, covering both modules featuring Chinese and non-Chinese cells. Trina (NYSE:TSL) is seeing an 18.56% tariff, bankrupt Suntech (NYSE:STP) a 35.21% tariff, and most other firms a 26.89% tariff.
- The move follows a complaint from Germany's SolarWorld that Chinese firms are using a loophole involving imported cells to sidestep the DOCs 2012 tariffs. A separate anti-dumping decision is due on July 25.
- Morgan Stanley notes many were expecting either a lower tariff (perhaps around 15%) or a settlement similar to the EU/China deal. Not surprisingly, the Chinese government says it's "strongly dissatisfied" with the DOC's action, and warns it could hurt trade ties.
- Chinese solar exporters are off: TSL -6.2%. YGE -5.8%. CSIQ -5.1%. JKS -8.8%. JASO -4.4%. CSUN -3.3%.
- U.S. peers First Solar (FSLR +2.5%) and SunPower (SPWR +5.5%) are higher. But SolarCity (SCTY -2.8%) and SunEdison (SUNE -3.5%) are off, as investors fear higher panel costs for solar projects. Also: SunEdison has announced a new $500M convertible debt offering. $350M-$400M of the proceeds will go to its TerraForm Power (Pending:TERP) spinoff.
- Solar ETFs: KWT, TAN
Jun. 4, 2014, 9:13 AM
May. 29, 2014, 2:45 PM
- SunEdison has filed an S-1 for its anticipated solar project spinoff. The spinoff, named TerraForm Power, will own a slew of SunEdison-built solar projects, while generating revenue (and distributing related cash flows) from electricity sale agreements.
- The IPO might pave the way for other companies with sizable downstream project portfolios, such as First Solar (FSLR +2.8%), JinkoSolar (JKS +9.7%), and Trina (TSL +8.2%), to do spinoffs of their own. SunEdison's move comes after SolarCity (SCTY +5.6%) twice raised funds by selling solar asset-backed notes.
- Solar stocks are following SunEdison higher (TAN +2.6%). In addition to the aforementioned companies, gainers include SunPower (SPWR +2.5%), Yingli (YGE +3.5%), Canadian Solar (CSIQ +4.6%), and Daqo (DQ +1.5%).
May. 28, 2014, 9:13 AM
- Xcel Energy (XEL) and SunPower (SPWR) have signed a power purchase agreement to construct a 50-megawatt solar photovoltaic power plant in Colorado's San Luis Valley.
- "This expansion of our renewable portfolio in Colorado is yet another example of how Xcel Energy brings solar power to its customers in the right way," declares CEO of Xcel Energy David Eves.
- The company predicts the plant will generate enough electricity for approximately 13,500 average Colorado homes. Xcel Energy currently supplies energy-related products and services to 3.5M customers. Construction is set to start in 2015, and to be fully operational by the end of 2016.
May. 7, 2014, 11:45 AM
- A Q1 beat and full-year guidance hike aren't enough to keep First Solar (FSLR -4.2%) from selling off. Possibly contributing: In spite of the guidance hike, First Solar stated on its CC (transcript) Q2 EPS "will be significantly lower" than a $0.60 consensus due to project timings; that implies 2014 results will be very back-end loaded.
- Also: First Solar disclosed in its earnings slides (.pdf) its expected future systems/3rd-party module revenue is down $400M from the end of 2013 to $7.1B. However, expected module shipments are up by 100MW to 2.8GW, and potential booking opportunities have risen by 1.6GW to 12.2GW.
- Module production totaled 441MW, -1% Q/Q and +19% Y/Y. Conversion efficiency rose 10 bps Q/Q and 60 bps Y/Y to 13.5%, with lead-line efficiency rising 30 bps Q/Q and 120 bps Y/Y to 14.2%. The company is aiming for 18.1%-18.9% lead-line efficiency by 2017.
- Other solar stocks are also off (TAN -2.8%), as investors continue showing a take-no-prisoners attitude towards momentum stocks in general. Canadian Solar (CSIQ +0.3%) has given back the premarket gains it saw following a Q1 guidance hike.
- Notable decliners: SCTY -8.8%. SUNE -7%. TSL -5.5%. CSUN -5.1%. YGE -4.8%. SPWR -4.2%. DQ -5.7%.
SPWR vs. ETF Alternatives
Other News & PR