The stock was reportedly downgraded to neutral from outperform by Robert W. Baird."We're upgrading First Solar from Underperform to Buy, in recognition of the company's cost reduction efforts and the resulting likely impact both on earnings and valuation," Bank of America Merrill Lynch analysts wrote in an April 18 report. "The company still faces substantial challenges, and we still see earnings declining the next several years. That said, we have pointed to excess manufacturing capacity as a problem, and the company has addressed the issue with yesterday's announcement." Shares of First Solar hit a 52-week low Monday of $19.10. The stock's 52-week high of $144.97 was set on April 29. First Solar's forward P/E is 4.9 times; the average for renewable energy equipment companies is 8.5. For comparison, GT Advanced Technologies (GTAT) has a lower forward P/E of 4.5. Twenty-seven of the 39 analysts who cover First Solar rate it at hold. Six analysts give the stock a buy rating and another six rate it at hold. TheStreet Ratings gives First Solar a C- grade and hold rating. The stock has fallen 41.71% year to date.
James River Coal "We remain comfortable with our Neutral rating on JRCC," Davenport analysts wrote in a March 22 report. "We are concerned about the company's high-cost thermal coal position and its uncommitted thermal coal position in 2013. Current CAPP thermal coal prices are well below the company's 2012 cost guidance of [about] $75/t. Unless thermal prices rebound materially, JRCC may be forced to sell coal at a loss or shut in some thermal production next year. The highlight for JRCC is its trading business, which we believe is solidly profitable and often overlooked by investors." Shares of James River Coal hit a 52-week low Monday of $4.30. The stock's 52-week high of $25.39 was set on May 2. Ten of the 13 analysts who cover James River Coal rated it hold; three analysts gave the stock a buy rating. TheStreet Ratings gives James River Coal a D grade and sell rating.
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