Energy Business

ITC Keeps Investigating Chinese Solar Players (FSLR, SPWRA, TSL, JASO, LDK)

Solar stocks can use all the help available, and news is out today that may help the ailing U.S.-based solar sector.  The industry has complained of China’s solar firms dumping solar cheap panels and the U.S. International Trade Commission has just come out in favor of U.S. solar companies.

The ITC bulletin noted that it has “made affirmative determinations in its five-year (sunset) reviews concerning Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaic Cells and Modules from China.  The USITC vote noted “Preliminary phase antidumping and countervailing duty investigations: Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaic Cells and Modules from China, Inv. Nos. 701-TA-481 and 731-TA-1190 (Preliminary)” today as the ITC sees threat or injury to U.S. solar firms from Chinese companies.

Seven US solar PV makers jointly filed the claim, but only the US unit of Germany’s SolarWorld was identified. Top US solar makers First Solar Inc. (NASDAQ: FSLR) and SunPower Corp. (NASDAQ: SPWRA) are not among the companies that signed on and no specific Chinese makers were identified in the complaint.

Leading makers like Trina Solar Ltd. (NYSE: TSL), JA Solar Holdings Co. Ltd. (NASDAQ: JASO), and LDK Solar Inc. (NYSE: LDK) are surely among the targets.  As far as LDK Solar is concerned, we have noted that this company is mathematically bankrupt without a guarantee from China.

Today’s news is not a registered victory as the outcome (and damage awards) are not yet known, but it is an indication that the U.S. solar players may get some margin stabilization ahead.

JON C. OGG