Alternative Energy and Cleantech Picks and Pans for 2013

Alternative Energy sources
Source: thinkstock
The alternative energy sector is supposed to be one of the great winners of the 2012 election outcome. After all, an Obama victory would indicate further government support for what are future power needs. The problem is that investors have lost so much money by investing in alternative energy in recent years that this sector has turned 401(k) retirement plans into 201(k) plans. Looking into 2013, that might not be the case universally.

24/7 Wall St. has decided to take a look into 2013 to see which cleantech and alternative energy players may be winners and losers ahead. Our review is not focused just on solar stocks. We have included some of the more well-known low-emission companies that are probably “less dirty” more than they are purely green or cleantech. Some of these stocks have had a rough 2012, while others actually have tried to find a bottom. The long and short is that some of these are likely to flourish in 2013 while others flounder.

It is important to consider what a recovery rally would look like if cleantech and green companies actually manage to start getting some good news again. Our message is simple: picking winners based solely on expectations of the past my prove to be lethal for your portfolio. 2013 brings risks of the fiscal cliff, new tariffs and duties being imposed on solar goods out of China, tax credit risks and maybe even risks of affordability means-testing down the road. Can SolarCity still manage to come public in an initial public offering?

In order to make this list for 2013, each company had to be well-known now or have a history. Companies have to have sales also, to avoid looking at only the most speculative possible shenanigans. Again, this is not just a list of stocks to buy. Some almost certainly are not buys at all. Another criteria is that investor interest has to be based on their alternative energy operations and efforts, or at least the cleaner and more efficient energy technologies. Each stock has to have an active following by Wall St. analysts as well. In order to avoid any grouping or dominance, we covered these in alphabetic order.

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