Short Sellers Walking Away From Solar, Piling Into Alt Energy Stocks

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Short interest moves among solar and alternative energy stocks were mostly upward during the two-week reporting period that ended on May 15.  Of the companies we watch, short interest rose on two of three solar stocks and on all four alternative energy stocks.

First Solar Inc. (NASDAQ: FSLR) saw short interest decrease by 21.6% to 15.56 million shares, which represents about 20.2% of the company’s float. Days to cover fell from six to three. In the two-week short interest period, the stock’s share price added about 32%. Its 52-week trading range is $25.56 to $51.33, and it closed at $38.90 on Wednesday, up about 6.7% for the day.

SunPower Corp. (NASDAQ: SPWR) short interest decreased by 8.8% to 19.76 million shares, or 33.9% of the company’s float. In the two weeks to May 15, the share price rose by 16.5%. The stock’s 52-week range is $5.84 to $17.74, and it closed at $8.27 on Wednesday, up 4% for the day. Days to cover fell from 10 to six.

Canadian Solar Inc. (NASDAQ: CSIQ) saw a rise of 7% in short interest during the two weeks. Some 16.7% of the total float, or 7.38 million shares, were short, and days to cover fell from seven to six. The company’s share price dipped by 2.8% over the period, and shares closed Wednesday at $13.30, up about 0.2% for the day, in a 52-week range of $10.25 to $19.65.

FuelCell Energy Inc. (NASDAQ: FCEL) posted an increase of 9.9% in short interest during the two-week period. Some 6.18 million shares were short as of May 15. The stock closed at $0.91 on Wednesday, down 1.6% for the day, in a 52-week range of $0.80 to $8.88. Shares plunged 43% in the short interest period, and days to cover rose from three to four.

Plug Power Inc. (NASDAQ: PLUG) saw short interest rise by 10.2% to 34.07 million shares. Days to cover rose from three to four, and about 16.2% of the company’s shares were short. In the first two weeks of May, the share price fell by nearly 20%. The stock’s 52-week range is $0.83 to $2.70, and shares closed Wednesday at $1.87, down about 2% for the day.

Clean Energy Fuels Corp. (NASDAQ: CLNE) saw an increase of about 6.6% in short interest to 7.74 million shares. About 6% of the company’s float was short, and days to cover fell from eight to five. The share price decreased by about 2.8% in the two-week period. The stock closed at $2.41 on Wednesday, down about 0.4%, in a 52-week range of $2.35 to $4.80.

Pacific Ethanol Inc. (NASDAQ: PEIX) saw short interest rise by 6.4% in the period to 1.28 million shares, about 3.1% of the company’s float. Days to cover remained unchanged at two. The stock price shed about 3% in the two weeks. Shares closed at $6.45 on Wednesday, up about 1.6% on the day, in a 52-week range of $4.64 to $10.95.