Our Solar Power Pick’s Shining

A lot of solar energy stocks have regained what they lost in the recent stock market correction. Almost in a stealthy fashion, this industry group continues to reinvent itself, going through periods of high investor interest to low investor interest and so on.

One company whose stock price is once again on fire is First Solar, Inc. (NASDAQ/FSLR). This company, which has been mentioned many times in this column, is one of the few domestic solar energy product companies in the marketplace. It’s based in Phoenix, Arizona, while most of the up-and-coming new solar companies are located in China.

When I first wrote about this company in this column, the stock was trading around $55.00 per share. Now, the stock is trading around $112.00 per share, and it recently hit a new record high of $123.00 per share.

Not surprisingly, this stock is expensively priced, but I think it’s going to stay expensively priced for a long time.

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I wrote before that the solar energy industry offers one of the best speculative investment opportunities this decade. Clearly, as the price of oil and gas rises, the value derived from alternative energy sources will increase. Solar energy has been around a long time and the industry is now finally coming to the forefront.

As technology advances and production costs come down, putting a couple of solar panels on your roof is increasingly becoming more affordable. The industry needs, however, one more shot in its arm if it is to really take off. The solar power industry needs more government incentive for actual installations at the consumer level. If this were to happen, an already booming industry would really cash in.

As a speculator or investor, it’s not too late to get in on the solar industry investment theme, but be aware that the ship has already left the harbor.