Bill Gunderson

Some readers might remember a few years ago, I said: Sell everything under the sun – talking about solar stocks.

At the time, First Solar was in the middle of a dive bomb from record highs to record lows. A lot of people, myself included, did quite well with that bit of advice, thank you.

That was then. This is now: Solar stocks have had a terrific year. So as 2013 comes to a close, a lot of people want to know: is it time to get back in?

Let’s see: We’ll use First Solar (FSLR) as a proxy because it remains the biggest solar stock by market cap.

Data from Best Stocks Now App

Headquartered in Phoenix, AZ, FSLR is a $5.9 billion company. The story starts in 2008 when FSLR was a $317/share company. Shortly thereafter I warned everyone to put on some sunscreen and run for shade from FSLR!

It finally landed last year at $11/share. Today it’s back at $60/share. FSLR has been a big winner over the past 12 months.

But the people who talk about how well the solar stocks are doing seem to leave out FSLR’s history beyond a year. From $317 down to $11 and back to $60.

I could make the argument that this stock has simply dropped from $317 to $60, down 250 points over the last five years. (Oops, I just did.) Let’s not forget that. But other momentum investors would say they don’t care about anything besides 2013. And they love solar: It’s the future!

My Best Stocks Now! app is an equal opportunity investor. It has no opinion on whether solar, wind, or oil, etc. is the future. All it does is look at the short-term, intermediate, and long-term performance, as well as the valuation and stock chart. So let’s do that.

Performance

I know FSLR has had a terrific 12 months, but what about the last 60? We can’t just put on our blacked-out, oversized sunglasses and ignore them. We still need to be able to look at, clearly, this period of time in FSLR’s history.


Bill Gunderson

Bill Gunderson is the CEO and Chief Market Strategist of Gunderson Capital Managment in San Diego, CA. He is also a professional money manager, former research analyst, author of Best Stocks Now. http://www.pwstreet.com