Solar ETFs Under Pressure

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Solar and alternative energy ETFs sold off on Friday, as markets gave a thumbs down to results from First Solar ( FSLR) and MEMC Electronics ( WFR) reported on Thursday.

First Solar beat earnings expectations, but solar sector bears chose to beat down the stock by 7.42% on pricing pressure concerns and subsidy reductions. MEMC missed earnings estimate by 3 cents and the stock is among the worst losers on Friday morning, dropping 15.2% to $9.55.

Market Vectors Solar ETF ( KWT), which has a 10.2% holding in MEMC and a 9.6% holding in First Solar, shed 4.2% on Friday to end at $11.18. Claymore/MAC Global Solar Energy ETF ( TAN) and iShares S&P Global Clean Energy ETF ( ICLN) were also heading lower.

Appetite for gold returned again on Friday. Gold prices headed higher as the dollar sank to a 2010 low on weak economic growth data. The SPDR Gold Shares ( GLD) rose 1.1% to $115.50. The Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners ETF ( GDXJ), which invests in higher-risk, higher-return gold stocks, also gained 1.8%.

-- Reported by Shanthi Venkataraman in New York.

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