Analyst Reactions To First Solar (FSLR) Earnings

I thought I’d provide a short summary on some of the analyst reactions coming out after First Solar’s (FSLR) earnings report Thursday night.  In light of the half way decent quarter, it’s no surprise that nearly all of the analysts maintained their current ratings on the stock with some obviously remaining more bearish than others.

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JP Morgan maintained its Underweight rating and $115 price target.  The firm noted that while lower than expected EPC sales led to a revenue shortfall, the company benefitted from a lower tax rate and higher margins.

Citigroup maintains a Hold rating and $150 price target.  They  like the flexibility of FSLR’s model but feel the EPS raise for this year is of low quality and due to lower startup costs and lower taxes.  That being said, Citi believes FSLR is more immune to any downturn because of its EPC pipeline.

Hapoalim Securities is maintaining its Sell rating, but upped the price target to $125. 

Jefferies is maintaining its Hold rating, but increasing the price target a bit from $154 to $160.  The firm believes FSLR is a low risk play in a high beta sector with strong visibility in 2011.

Auriga maintains its Hold rating and $167 price target.  The firm believes FSLR has established the premier business model in the solar sector.  They say that while bears will focus on the revenue miss, don’t sweat the small stuff and have confidence that management will continue to deliver.  However, they are not putting new money to work since there isn’t enough upside to their $167 price target.

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