Sunpower (SPWRA) Misses Estimates, Guides Below, Blames Europe

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08:21:58 am on May 13, 2011

Sunpower (SPWRA) reported earnings that missed analyst estimates.  The company reported an EPS of .15/share on revenues of $451 million vs the analyst estimates for .17 in EPS and $479 in revenues.  Although those numbers still represent quarter over quarter EPS and revenue growth of 200% and 30% respectively. The CEO blamed the miss on changing market conditions in Europe which is beginning to be a common theme in the latest round solar earnings reports.

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“Revenues and inventory levels in the first quarter were impacted by the pause in business activity in Italy, as several projects awaited clarity on the new tariffs,” said Dennis Arriola, SunPower CFO.  “Italy’s new feed-in-tariff, announced earlier this month, follows the trend across Europe of favoring rooftop solar investment.  SunPower’s high efficiency systems and flexible dealer/partner network positions us effectively to respond to the uncapped rooftop market in Italy and other countries.”

Looking ahead, the company is also guiding the 2nd quarter below estimates and now sees revenues in the range of $500 – $550 million (vs the estimate for $597 million).  However, for the full year, they are reiterating their shipment guidance of 825 – 920MW.

Shares are down fractionally in pre-market trading.  Technically, shares remain bullish after having broken out of a long basing pattern a few weeks ago.  The first level of new support is around the $20 level which it may need to test after missing earnings estimates.

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