North Coast Solar Stocks

June 29, 2007

Alternative Energy IPOs Going Strong

Filed under: JASO — Tags: , , — Jason @ 4:22 pm

Friday June 29, 4:22 pm ET
By Lauren Villagran, AP Business Writer

Investors Still Hankering for Alternative Energy IPOs but Ethanol Is Out, Chinese Solar Is In

NEW YORK (AP) — Investors’ appetites for new alternative energy companies remain robust but tastes have shifted: while ethanol makers seem to have exhausted their favor, Chinese solar cell makers continue to pull in fresh capital. According to IPOHome.com, 115 companies went public in the U.S. during the first half of the year. Of those, eight were in the alternative energy sector, compared to nine offerings for all of 2006.

“What we’re seeing is a very strong pipeline” of renewable energy IPOs, both in the U.S. and overseas, said Michael Liebreich, chairman and chief executive of research provider New Energy Finance.

That’s particularly true for solar and wind companies, he said. On the other hand, after a banner 2006 that saw three ethanol companies raise just shy of $1 billion in initial public offerings, ethanol IPOs have ground to a halt as concerns about high raw material costs and saturation curbed market demand.

(more…)

June 28, 2007

Eco-friendly building grows in popularity

Filed under: none — Tags: , — Jason @ 7:23 pm

By Zeke Barlow
Thursday, June 28, 2007

Last year, when the architecture magazine Dwell proclaimed that green building had become mainstream, Tracey Miles Reineke rolled his eyes.

Even though Reineke, president of the Green Building Council of Ventura County, wanted it to be true, it seemed more hyperbole than fact. After all, solar panels, sustainable materials and environment-friendly designs have been around for years but not embraced by the masses.

Over the past 12 months, however, when requests for green building information at his nonprofit group quadrupled, Reineke realized the magazine was spot on.

“People are waking up and realizing not only is it a good way to reduce carbon footprints, but a way to manage resources and make money,” he said.

Around Ventura County, from military bases to homes tucked into the hills of Santa Paula, green building is catching on. Reineke estimates the number of homes being built with environment-friendly materials is 30 percent of all new and remodeled homes, up from 20 percent in recent years. Habitat for Humanity recently built two Oxnard homes with solar panels on the roofs.

It’s happening all around the country, too. The House of Representatives recently vowed to make its hallowed building more energy-efficient. On college campuses, administrators have pledged to do their part to curb global warming.

The phenomenon has gone much further than traditional solar panels. Floors can be made with reused bamboo, new water heaters use a fraction of the energy that old ones use, homes are better insulated to cut down on energy use, materials are available without toxics that create poor indoor air quality, and outdoor surfaces are made to reduce water runoff.

“Green building has evolved to the point where it’s not just a fringe thing,” said Karen Feeney, green resources manager for Allen Associates, a building contractor in Santa Barbara and Ventura that specializes in green construction. (more…)

June 27, 2007

Proposed law in Pa. to mandate solar power

Filed under: none — Tags: , — Jason @ 11:28 am

HARRISBURG, Pa., June 27 (UPI) — The Pennsylvania Legislature may soon increase its solar power mandate for utilities. Lawmakers are working on legislative action that would mandate a 1,250 percent increase in the solar requirements provided by electric utilities over the next 15 years.

The proposed legislation is raising alarm bells for some in the energy sector. The estimated price tag for the additional requirement for power distribution companies could conservatively increase generation costs by $172 million and up to as much as $426 million, according to some industry analysts.

“While we laud the Legislature and governor for looking at greener energy solutions,” said Michael Love, president of the Energy Association of Pennsylvania, an energy industry trade group representing electric companies, “unfortunately, right now their efforts are very costly to today’s rate payers.”

A study by the Energy Association of Pennsylvania found that using the current price being paid for solar in New Jersey, 22 cents per kilowatt hour, would increase generation rates by an additional $172 million. Current generation costs, using existing energy sources, are in the range of 4 to 7 cents per kilowatt hour.

“The cost of solar energy, at this point in time, is the most costly energy source we have,” Love said. “If our government wishes to increase the solar energy generation resources, then the government must commit to greater utilization of solar in its own facilities to help grow this emerging technology.”

June 26, 2007

GE Ignites DayStar Technologies With Thin Film Purchase

Filed under: DSTI, GE — Tags: , , , , — Jason @ 1:16 pm

Tuesday June 26, 1:16 pm ET

DayStar is certainly in play after Canadian newspaper Globe & Mail reported that General Electric Inc. (GE) is purchasing thin film products from the company. General Electric is one of many corporations beginning to work under a U.S. federal program to make solar power cost-competitive by 2015. General Electric is assessing thin film cells that have a wide range of applications and is looking to create a durable commercial product.

It is important to realize that such an order is probably not very significant and that DayStar still does not have the manufacturing capability to produce thin film cells en masse. However, even skeptics would agree that what’s most important about such a deal is that it highlights the adoption of thin film technology which definitely bodes well for DayStar in the long run. Plus, the ability to catch the attention of a major player like General Electric is something worth noting. That is why right out of the gate this morning DayStar is extending yesterday’s 30+% gains by $.59, or 10%, to $6.52 on very heavy volume of 2.7 million shares three hours before the closing bell. Average trading volume is usually just around 297,000 shares.

Applied Materials to Buy Solar Company

Filed under: AMAT — Tags: , — Jason @ 9:44 am

Tuesday June 26, 9:44 am ET

Applied Materials to Buy Swiss Solar Company HCT Shaping Systems for $475 Million

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — Chip manufacturing equipment maker Applied Materials Inc. said Tuesday it agreed to buy privately held HCT Shaping Systems SA for 583 million Swiss francs ($475 million).Switzerland-based HCT makes precision wafering systems used mainly to make crystalline silicon substrates for the solar industry. Applied said the deal is part of its plan to help its customers reduce the cost of photovoltaic cell manufacturing and make solar energy more competitive with grid electricity. Photovoltaic cells convert sunlight into electricity.

The all-cash deal is expected to close in Applied’s fiscal fourth quarter, which ends in October.

June 25, 2007

Hoku Continues To Power Higher

Filed under: HOKU — Tags: , — Jason @ 10:45 pm

Carl Gutierrez

06.25.07, 10:45 PM ET

It’s the little stock that could.

Hoku Scientific shot up 22.9%, or $2.00, Monday to $10.74, continuing a remarkable run that has seen shares of the alternative energy technology rise 54.5% since Wednesday’s close, and 133.5% since June 13.

The catalyst for the small-cap’s advance Monday was not clear, though one analyst thought it may have been due to institutional investors diving in following the company’s market cap passing $100 million in the wake of a big deal announced Wednesday.

The company’s Hoku Materials subsidiary, established in February to make polysilicon for solar cells, signed a definitive contract for the sale and delivery of the product to Global Expertise Wafer Division, a subsidiary of German solar company Solar-Fabrik, over a seven-year period beginning in the second half of 2009.

Rober Stone of Cowen and Co. said the deal was significant for the company. Stone said it had been planning to construct a polysilicon plant with a 2,000 metric ton capacity expected to begin producing in 2009, but this deal means it will have to ramp up output to 3,000 metric tons, rendering the company 50% larger than planned.

According to the Kapolei, Hawaii-based company, the contract is worth up to approximately $185 million.

Stone said that institutional investors may have fuelled Monday’s rise.

“Since Hoku’s share price is in the double digits and is worth more than $100 million, it has become possible for additional institutional ownership,” he said.

Stone also noted that the small-cap is likely to have attracted attention from momentum traders as well as those who wish to short it because they think it won’t stay up.

The company’s daily trading volume has been on a roller-coaster. On Wednesday, before the company made its announcement, 2.2 million shares were traded. After the announcement, volume spiked to 26.6 million shares on Thursday, then fell to 9.4 million on Friday. Monday’s volume reached 33.4 million shares.

In a report published June 21, Stone noted Hoku stands appart from most of its competitors because it does not use fluorinated membranes, which, according to Stone, should result in lower cost, improved durability and performance, and fewer environmental issues.

Stone also noted Hoku has established strategic relationships with customers in “targeted market segments,” such as Sanyo, Nissan and the U.S. Navy. According to Stone, Hoku also intends to add a partner in the portable segment.

According to Stone, although customers to date have not commercially deployed products containing Hoku technology, it generates “significant” earnings from service and licenses, as well as products used in development.

June 14, 2007

Solar World: EU grid parity by 2020

Filed under: none — Tags: , — Jason @ 11:35 am

By LEAH KRAUSS
UPI Energy Correspondent

The day solar photovoltaic energy can compete with fossil fuel-driven electricity in Europe is not far off, delegates to the European Union Photovoltaic Technology Platform conference said this week.

“Grid parity — the (cost) competitiveness of PV with conventional energy sources — will be reached in Southern Europe by 2015 and most of Europe by 2020,” Marie Latour, the communications officer for the Brussels-based European Photovoltaic Industry Association, told United Press International.

According to the Strategic Research Agenda presented at the conference, the typical cost of solar electricity generation in Southern Europe in the 1980s was more than $2.66 per kilowatt hour. Today, the same amount of solar energy costs about 40 cents.

The Strategic Research Agenda predicts that in 2015, solar energy will cost 20 cents per kilowatt-hour in Southern Europe, making it competitive with retail prices for fossil fuel-driven electricity. By 2030, this cost will fall to 8 cents per kilowatt hour, a price that can compete with wholesale rates for conventional power.

Finally, the report projects that the long-term potential price for solar energy generation in Southern Europe is as low as 4 cents per kilowatt hour. (All prices were originally quoted in euros in the report.)

The time to return on investment for solar energy systems will also drop dramatically, the report said: In Southern Europe, a system that today pays for itself within two years will show a return on the investment within only one year by 2015. In 2030, the same solar investment will pay for itself within six months, and beyond that the agenda’s authors saw systems taking only three months to become profitable.

The meeting, held Tuesday in Berlin, was “a great success: We had 300 participants coming from all over Europe and in particular from Germany,” Latour said. The delegates resolved that European public research budgets should keep pace with photovoltaic market growth — in other words, research funding should double.

(more…)

June 13, 2007

MEMC Electronic Materials Entry

Filed under: WFR — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:19 am

WFR – MEMC Electronic Materials

Entry Price $57.28 6/13/07

Original Stop Loss $25.00

Adjusted Stop Loss $50.00 Hit 7/10/08

Loss of $7.28 or 13%

Trina Solar Entry

Filed under: TSL — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:18 am

TSL – Trina Solar Ltd.

Entry Price $39.94  6/13/07

Original Stop Loss $15.00

Adjusted Stop Loss $25.00 Hit 9/9/08

Loss of $14.94 or 37%

Suntech Power Entry

Filed under: STP — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:17 am

STP – Suntech Power Holdings Co. Ltd.

Entry Price $32.00  6/13/07

Original Stop Loss $20.00

Adjusted Stop Loss $30.00 Hit 10/2/08

Loss of $2.00 or 6.25%

SunPower Entry

Filed under: SPWR — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:17 am

SPWR – SunPower Corp.

Entry Price $53.75  6/13/07

Original Stop Loss $20.00

Adjusted Stop Loss $50.00 Hit 10/8/08

Loss of $3.75 or 7%

Solarfun Power Entry

Filed under: SOLF — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:15 am

SOLF – Solarfun Power Holdings Co., Ltd.

Entry Price $8.46  6/13/07

Original Stop Loss 6.00

Adjusted Stop Loss $10.00 Hit 9/29/08

Gain of $1.54 or 18.2%

LDK Solar Entry

Filed under: LDK — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:14 am

LDK – LDK Solar Co., Ltd.

Entry Price $23.43 6/13/07

Original Stop Loss $15.00

Adjusted Stop Loss $25.00 Hit 10/6/08

Gain of $1.57 or 6.7%

JA Solar Entry

Filed under: JASO — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:13 am

JASO – JA Solar Holdings, Co., Ltd.

Entry Price $8.34 6/13/07

Split 3 for 1 2/8/08

Original Stop Loss $5.00

Adjusted Stop Loss $12.00 Hit 9/10/08

Gain of $3.66 or 44%

ICP Solar Entry

Filed under: ICPR — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:12 am

ICPR – ICP Solar Technologies, Inc.

Entry Price $3.05  6/13/07

Stop Loss $1.00  Hit 12/28/07

Loss of $2.05 or 67%

Hoku Scientific Entry

Filed under: HOKU — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:11 am

HOKU – Hoku Scientific Inc.

Entry Price $4.50  6/13/07

Original Stop Loss $2.00

Adjusted Stop Loss $4.00 Hit 10/9/08

Loss of $0.50 or 11.1%

First Solar Entry

Filed under: FSLR — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:10 am

FSLR – First Solar Inc.

Entry Price $73.75  6/13/07

Original Stop Loss $40.00

Adjusted Stop Loss $160.00 Hit 10/3/08

Gain of $86.25 or 117%

Evergreen Solar Entry

Filed under: ESLR — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:09 am

ESLR – Evergreen Solar, Inc.

Entry Price $8.82  6/13/07

Original Stop Loss $5.00

Adjusted Stop Loss $7.00 Hit 9/9/08

Loss of $1.82 or 20.6%

Energy Conversion Devices Entry

Filed under: ENER — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:08 am

ENER – Energy Conversion Devices, Inc.

Entry Price $30.30  6/13/07

Original Stop Loss $20.00

Adjusted Stop Loss $30.00 Hit 10/10/08

Loss of $0.30 or 1%

DayStar Technologies Entry

Filed under: DSTI — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:06 am

DSTI – DayStar Technologies, Inc.

Entry Price $5.13 6/13/07

Original Stop Loss $2.00

Adjusted Stop Loss $3.00 Hit 7/25/08

Loss of $2.13 or 41.5%

China Sunergy Entry

Filed under: CSUN — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:05 am

CSUN – China Sunergy Co. Ltd.

Entry Price $11.02  6/13/07

Stop Loss $8.00  Hit 8/6/07

Loss of $3.02 or 27%

Canadian Solar Entry

Filed under: CSIQ — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:04 am

CSIQ – Canadian Solar Inc.

Entry Price $9.71  6/13/07

Original Stop Loss $6.00

Adjusted Stop Loss $16.00 Hit 10/3/08

Gain of $6.29 or 65%

Ascent Solar Entry

Filed under: ASTI — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:03 am

ASTI – Ascent Solar Technologies, Inc.

Entry Price $7.30  6/13/07

Original Stop Loss $3.50

Adjusted Stop Loss $7.00 Hit 9/8/08

Loss of $0.30 or 4.1%

Applied Materials Entry

Filed under: AMAT — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:02 am

AMAT – Applied Materials, Inc.

Entry Price $18.94  6/13/07

Original Stop Loss $14.00

Adjusted Stop Loss $16.00 Hit 9/17/08

Dividends paid $0.30

Loss of $2.64 or 13.9%

Akeena Solar Entry

Filed under: AKNS — Tags: , — Jason @ 12:01 am

AKNS – Akeena Solar, Inc.

Entry Price $3.62  6/13/07

Original Stop Loss $1.80

Adjusted Stop Loss $3.50 Hit 9/9/08

Loss of $0.12 or 3.3%

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