Solar Module Prices to Drop 20 Percent in ’09, UBS Says

Sunshine is free. Solar modules are not. But they are getting cheaper: UBS analyst Stephen Chin today revised his forecast for solar module pricing to down 20 percent from a previous estimate of down 14 percent. Chin says the recent move by the government in Spain to cap its solar subsidy program will move solar module volumes to other markets, including Germany and Japan, where lower pricing is required to generate favorable returns for solar system buyers. The revised Spanish solar subsidy program will cut installations in Spain to 300MW next year, from an estimated 1.2GW this year.

Chin today cut EPS estimates by about 10 percent for 13 global solar companies, including SunPower (SPWR), Evergreen Solar (ESLR), LDK (LDK), Suntech (STP), Yingli (YGE), Q-Cells, Solarworld, REC, Conergy, Solon, Motech, E-Ton and Sino-American Silicon. He also cut his rating on SunPower to Neutral from Buy, while increasing his rating on Energy Conversion Devices (ENER) to Buy from Neutral.

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