First Solar, Inc. (NASDAQ:FSLR) Short Interest Up 6.5% in October

First Solar, Inc. (NASDAQ:FSLR) was the target of a large growth in short interest in October. As of October 31st, there was short interest totalling 11,470,000 shares, a growth of 6.5% from the September 30th total of 10,770,000 shares. Based on an average trading volume of 1,370,000 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 8.4 days. Approximately 15.2% of the shares of the company are short sold.

Several brokerages have recently weighed in on FSLR. BidaskClub raised First Solar from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, September 24th. ValuEngine raised First Solar from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Monday, November 4th. Cowen set a $83.00 price objective on First Solar and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, October 25th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. set a $82.00 price objective on First Solar and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, October 15th. Finally, UBS Group set a $73.00 price target on First Solar and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, October 25th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and eleven have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $70.92.

Shares of FSLR stock traded down $0.21 on Monday, reaching $53.15. 893,300 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 1,336,728. The stock has a market cap of $5.54 billion, a PE ratio of 39.08, a P/E/G ratio of 0.93 and a beta of 1.26. First Solar has a one year low of $38.45 and a one year high of $69.24. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.09, a current ratio of 4.00 and a quick ratio of 3.24. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $55.20 and a 200 day moving average price of $60.92.

First Solar (NASDAQ:FSLR) last released its earnings results on Thursday, October 24th. The solar cell manufacturer reported $0.29 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.06 by ($0.77). The firm had revenue of $547.00 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $995.41 million. First Solar had a negative return on equity of 0.07% and a negative net margin of 0.14%. The company’s revenue was down 19.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $0.54 EPS. On average, research analysts expect that First Solar will post 2.44 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other First Solar news, CTO Raffi Garabedian sold 16,370 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, October 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $53.18, for a total value of $870,556.60. Following the sale, the chief technology officer now owns 190 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $10,104.20. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, insider Georges Antoun sold 8,476 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, September 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $59.09, for a total value of $500,846.84. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 65,134 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,848,768.06. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 41,798 shares of company stock worth $2,351,907 over the last three months. 0.72% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in FSLR. Janney Montgomery Scott LLC grew its stake in shares of First Solar by 2.4% during the second quarter. Janney Montgomery Scott LLC now owns 6,520 shares of the solar cell manufacturer’s stock worth $428,000 after purchasing an additional 155 shares during the period. Garner Asset Management Corp grew its stake in First Solar by 3.5% in the second quarter. Garner Asset Management Corp now owns 5,895 shares of the solar cell manufacturer’s stock valued at $387,000 after acquiring an additional 200 shares during the period. Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan grew its stake in First Solar by 1.5% in the second quarter. Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan now owns 13,960 shares of the solar cell manufacturer’s stock valued at $917,000 after acquiring an additional 200 shares during the period. Bradley Foster & Sargent Inc. CT grew its stake in First Solar by 1.3% in the third quarter. Bradley Foster & Sargent Inc. CT now owns 16,006 shares of the solar cell manufacturer’s stock valued at $929,000 after acquiring an additional 200 shares during the period. Finally, Cetera Advisor Networks LLC grew its stake in First Solar by 4.0% in the third quarter. Cetera Advisor Networks LLC now owns 5,180 shares of the solar cell manufacturer’s stock valued at $300,000 after acquiring an additional 200 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 62.41% of the company’s stock.

About First Solar

First Solar, Inc provides photovoltaic (PV) solar energy solutions in the United States and internationally. It operates in two segments, Modules and Systems. The Components segment designs, manufactures, and sells cadmium telluride solar modules that convert sunlight into electricity. This segment offers its products to integrators and operators of PV solar power systems.

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