The Vetr Inc. Downgrades First Solar Inc. (FSLR) to Buy

The Vetr Inc. Downgrades First Solar Inc. (FSLR) to Buy

First Solar Inc. (NASDAQ:FSLR) was downgraded by equities researchers at Vetr from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Thursday. They currently have a $43.85 price target on the solar cell manufacturer’s stock. Vetr‘s price objective would suggest a potential upside of 16.68% from the stock’s previous close.

FSLR has been the subject of a number of other research reports. Robert W. Baird reaffirmed an “outperform” rating and set a $60.00 price objective (down previously from $68.00) on shares of First Solar in a research report on Friday, July 8th. Morgan Stanley set a $59.00 price objective on shares of First Solar and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 3rd. Oppenheimer Holdings Inc. reaffirmed an “outperform” rating and set a $56.00 price objective on shares of First Solar in a research report on Friday, August 5th. Williams Capital assumed coverage on shares of First Solar in a research report on Friday, September 30th. They set a “buy” rating and a $50.00 price objective for the company. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. lowered shares of First Solar from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and cut their price objective for the company from $58.00 to $42.00 in a research report on Thursday. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have given a hold rating and twelve have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $56.83.

First Solar (NASDAQ:FSLR) opened at 37.58 on Thursday. The firm has a market capitalization of $3.85 billion, a P/E ratio of 5.53 and a beta of 1.54. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $37.43 and its 200 day moving average price is $48.12. First Solar has a 12 month low of $33.74 and a 12 month high of $74.29.

First Solar (NASDAQ:FSLR) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, August 3rd. The solar cell manufacturer reported $0.87 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.55 by $0.32. The firm earned $934.40 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $862.68 million. First Solar had a net margin of 17.45% and a return on equity of 13.78%. The business’s revenue was up 4.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.93 EPS. On average, analysts forecast that First Solar will post $4.25 earnings per share for the current year.

In related news, EVP Christopher Bueter sold 29,384 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $44.23, for a total value of $1,299,654.32. Following the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 17,718 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $783,667.14. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director James Alton Hughes sold 180,448 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $44.43, for a total transaction of $8,017,304.64. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 201,577 shares in the company, valued at $8,956,066.11. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.40% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Northwestern Mutual Investment Management Company LLC boosted its stake in First Solar by 0.4% in the second quarter. Northwestern Mutual Investment Management Company LLC now owns 2,924 shares of the solar cell manufacturer’s stock valued at $142,000 after buying an additional 11 shares in the last quarter. IBM Retirement Fund boosted its stake in First Solar by 0.6% in the second quarter. IBM Retirement Fund now owns 7,643 shares of the solar cell manufacturer’s stock valued at $371,000 after buying an additional 49 shares in the last quarter. Scotia Capital Inc. boosted its stake in First Solar by 1.2% in the second quarter. Scotia Capital Inc. now owns 4,459 shares of the solar cell manufacturer’s stock valued at $216,000 after buying an additional 55 shares in the last quarter. World Asset Management Inc boosted its stake in First Solar by 1.0% in the second quarter. World Asset Management Inc now owns 7,180 shares of the solar cell manufacturer’s stock valued at $348,000 after buying an additional 71 shares in the last quarter. Finally, BOKF NA boosted its stake in First Solar by 3.8% in the second quarter. BOKF NA now owns 2,202 shares of the solar cell manufacturer’s stock valued at $106,000 after buying an additional 81 shares in the last quarter. 57.50% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

First Solar Company Profile

First Solar, Inc is a provider of photovoltaic (PV) solar energy solutions. The Company designs, manufactures and sells PV solar modules with thin-film semiconductor technology, and also develops, designs, constructs and sells PV solar power solutions. The Company operates through two segments: components and systems.

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