In a research report released Friday, Baird analyst Ben Kallo reiterated an Outperform rating on shares of solar panel maker First Solar, Inc. (NASDAQ FSLR), while reducing the price target from $68 to $60, after lowering his 2017 estimates to reflect lower project and higher module sales.
For 2016, Kallo now estimates non-GAAP EPS of $4.21 vs. previous estimate of $4.17. For 2017, he now estimates revenue of $3.39B and EPS of $2.51 versus previous estimates of $3.86B and $3.46, respectively.
Kallo wrote, “We are highlighting FSLR as a top pick for investors with a long-term time horizon. We believe the 2017 earnings “cliff” is largely priced into the stock, and think there could be upside to investor expectations (we think the 2017 EPS whisper number is ~$2.00). Given FSLR’s strong balance sheet, international pipeline, and continued technology advancements, we believe the company is positioned for long-term growth and would be aggressive buyers of shares at current levels.”
“We think the downside is relatively limited at current levels and recommend FSLR shares for investors with a 1+ year time horizon. We believe shares will appreciate from current levels after investors receive clarity around FSLR’s order book and financial expectations for 2017,” the analyst added.
According to TipRanks.com, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, analyst Ben Kallo has a yearly average return of 2.4% and a 46% success rate. Kallo has a -12.6% average return when recommending FSLR, and is ranked #1128 out of 4018 analysts.
Out of the 22 analysts polled by TipRanks, 13 rate First Solar stock a Buy, while 9 rate the stock a Hold. With a return potential of 54%, the stock’s consensus target price stands at $70.03.