Will First Solar’s Upcoming Earnings Shine Light for Investors?
S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component First Solar (NASDAQ:FSLR) will unveil its latest earnings on Wednesday, August 1, 2012. First Solar designs and manufactures solar electric power modules using a proprietary thin film semiconductor technology.
First Solar Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet
Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average estimate of analysts is for profit of 91 cents per share, a rise of 30% from the company’s actual earnings for the same quarter a year ago. During the past three months, the average estimate has moved up from 71 cents. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate moved up. It has dropped from 93 cents during the last month. Analysts are projecting profit to rise by 34.6% compared to last year’s $3.93.
Past Earnings Performance: The company enters this earnings report having missed estimates the last four quarters. Last quarter, the company fell short of expectations by 56 cents, reporting a loss of of 8 cents per share against a mean estimate of net income of 48 cents per share.
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A Look Back: In the first quarter, the company swung to a loss of $449.4 million ($5.20 a share) from a profit of $116 million ($1.33) a year earlier, missing analyst expectations. Revenue fell 12.4% to $497.1 million from $567.3 million.
Wall St. Revenue Expectations: On average, analysts predict $817.6 million in revenue this quarter, a rise of 53.5% from the year-ago quarter. Analysts are forecasting total revenue of $3.47 billion for the year, a rise of 25.3% from last year’s revenue of $2.77 billion.
Stock Price Performance: Between May 1, 2012 and July 27, 2012, the stock price fell $3.90 (-21.20%), from $18.40 to $14.50. The stock price saw one of its best stretches over the last year between January 31, 2012 and February 7, 2012, when shares rose for six straight days, increasing 10.2% (+$4.31) over that span. It saw one of its worst periods between March 29, 2012 and April 9, 2012 when shares fell for seven straight days, dropping 19.6% (-$4.93) over that span.
On the top line, the company is looking to get back on the right track after last quarter’s drop snapped a string of revenue increases. Revenue rose 8.3% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year and 26.1% in the third quarter of the last fiscal year before falling in the first quarter.
Balance Sheet Analysis: The company’s current ratio of assets to liabilities came in at 2.48 last quarter. Having a ratio above 2:1 is usually considered a good indicator of a company’s liquidity and ability to meet creditor demands. The company regressed in this liquidity measure from 2.68 in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year to the last quarter driven in part by an increase in liabilities. Current liabilities increased 20.3% to $1.17 billion while assets rose 11% to $2.9 billion.
Analyst Ratings: There are mostly holds on the stock with 20 of 26 analysts surveyed giving that rating.
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(Company fundamentals by Xignite Financials. Earnings estimates provided by Zacks)
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