The Wall Street Transcript Interviews Aaron Chew, Vice President of Equity Research and Senior Alternative Energy/Solar Analyst at Maxim Group LLC: Success in Solar Contingent on the Economy of the Industry

Wall Street Transcript

67 WALL STREET, New York - February 19, 2013 - The Wall Street Transcript has just published its Alternative Energy Report offering a timely review of the sector to serious investors and industry executives. This special feature contains expert industry commentary through in-depth interviews with public company CEOs and Equity Analysts. The full issue is available by calling (212) 952-7433 or via The Wall Street Transcript Online.

Topics covered: Grid Parity Timelines for Alternative Energy - Asia Pacific Demand for Solar Energy - Alternative Energy Generation - Solar Energy Pricing - Government Subsidies and Regulation - The Rise of the Energy Efficiency Market - LED Adoption in Large-Scale Projects - Long-Term Opportunities in Emerging Markets - Solar Growth Drivers and Headwinds

Companies include: American Superconductor Corpor (AMSC), First Solar, Inc. (FSLR), Suntech Power Holdings Co. Ltd (STP), Trina Solar Ltd. (TSL), Canadian Solar Inc. (CSIQ), Apple Inc. (AAPL), LDK Solar Co.Ltd. (LDK), Colgate-Palmolive Co. (CL), Koninklijke Philips Electronic (PHG), Siemens AG (SI), Cree Inc. (CREE), General Electric Co. (GE), Emerson Electric Co. (EMR), Acuity Brands, Inc. (AYI) and many more.

In the following excerpt from the Alternative Energy Report, an expert analyst discusses the outlook for the sector for investors:

TWST: Let's start with solar. What are the major themes in the space right now?

Mr. Chew: Solar is by far my forte; I built my research career on solar. I've had a bearish call on the group - largely, broadly since middle of 2010. I had a "sell" on First Solar (FSLR) at $125 and Suntech (STP) at $10, so it was the accurate call and it helped my reputation among investors, especially given Wall Street's lack of propensity to those "sell" ratings on stocks.

The flip side of it is: All the cap got destroyed, and you run out of things to talk about. The further irony is that anybody who knows me personally knows that I actually am very prosolar. I generally want and expect to see solar everywhere in the world, all over the place: on highways, homes and businesses over the next 10 years. That said, I am bearish on the sector because of the nuances throughout the value chain.

There is a tendency in Wall Street for people to associate a stock with the rest of the sector, so what's good for the leader like First Solar must be good for everyone else, and what's bad for the leader must be bad for everyone else. But the most important thing I've realized about solar - and I would say, alternative energy in general - is that for all of the altruistic sentiment behind it and for all of the broader intangible benefits it offers, the fact of the matter is the success is not going to be contingent upon how green it is. For better or for worse, the success is always going to be a function - how economic it is.

When you are looking at identifying the right investment in the space, good solar growth doesn't necessarily mean there is an investment. Just because there are high shipments of solar panels doesn't mean it's necessarily an investment opportunity. The question is, what is the underlying profitability of these businesses...

For more of this interview and many others visit the Wall Street Transcript - a unique service for investors and industry researchers - providing fresh commentary and insight through verbatim interviews with CEOs, portfolio managers and research analysts. This special issue is available by calling (212) 952-7433 or via The Wall Street Transcript Online.

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