First Solar Upgraded on Strong Business Model

by: Eric Savitz

ThinkEquity analyst Colin Rusch Wednesday morning upgraded First Solar (NASDAQ:FSLR) to Buy from Accumulate, lifting his price target to $188, from $180. He also raised his 2010 EPS estimate for the company to $8.99, from $8.55, above the consensus at $8.52.

“Given the recent sell-off of solar stocks and FSLR’s 29% move lower from its May high, we believe investors can begin to get constructive on the stock in anticipation that the company meets Q2 estimates, reiterated 2009 guidance, and the potential for consensus 2010 estimates to increase on higher system sales,” he writes in a research note.

Rusch adds that he thinks FSLR has “the only unquestionably sustainable business model in the solar industry,” and contends the company is “actively taking market share despite the weak business environment.”

FSLR Wednesday is up 74 cents, or 0.5%, to $145.48.

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