The U.S. Solar Industry has experienced a resurgence over the past year as newly-imposed import tariffs on Chinese solar cells have helped companies compete with their Chinese competitors. According to the Solar Energy Industries Association the U.S. solar industry market increased to $11.5 billion, a year-over-year increase of 34 percent. Five Star Equities examines the outlook for companies in the Solar Industry and provides equity research on First Solar, Inc. (NASDAQ: FSLR) and SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ: SPWR).
In 2012, the U.S. installed a record 3,313 megawatts (MW) of solar photovoltaics (PV). At the end of 2012 the U.S. contained 7,221 MW of PV and 546 MW of concentrating solar power, which is enough to power approximately 1.2 million homes.
“There were 16 million solar panels installed in the U.S. last year — more than 2 panels per second of the work day — and every one of these panels was bolted down by a member of the U.S. workforce,” said Rhone Resch, president and CEO of SEIA. “We’ve brought more new solar online in 2012 than in the three prior years combined.”
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First Solar modules are the foundation to the world’s most advanced PV power plants. With over 7GW produced worldwide, First Solar’s advanced thin film technology has set the benchmark for sustainable energy solutions. The company reported record net sales of $1.1 billion for the fourth quarter of 2012, an increase of $415 million when compared to a year ago.
SunPower is a vertically integrated solar products and services company that designs, manufactures and delivers solar electric systems worldwide for residential, commercial and utility-scale power plant customers. The company and KB Home recently celebrated their 1,000th solar home milestone. In approximately a year and a half KB Home has incorporated SunPower’s PV systems into over 1,000 new homes.
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