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What's in the Cards for First Solar (FSLR) in Q2 Earnings?

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First Solar, Inc. (FSLR - Free Report) is set to report second-quarter 2021 results on Jul 29, after market close.

In the last reported quarter, the company delivered an earnings surprise of 96%. First Solar surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in three of the trailing four quarters, the average surprise being 65.68%.

Factors to Consider

Some of First Solar's module deliveries planned for the first quarter were delayed, led by a postal port congestion in the United States along with logistics challenges stemming from February's winter weather events in the Southern United States. To this end, the company announced in its first-quarter earnings call that it expects to witness similar delays during the second quarter that could result in delays in module recognition. Such delays are likely to have slowed down its deliveries and thus, led to a negative impact on its second-quarter revenues.

Irrespective of such delays, the company's Series 6 module has been experiencing a robust demand across the globe, as it continues to improve the overall module efficiency, especially for markets with hot and humid climates. This might have led to increased shipping volumes outside of the United States, thereby contributing favorably to its top-line performance in the soon-to-reported quarter.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for second-quarter sales is pegged at $526.6 million, which indicates a 1.6% decline from the year-ago quarter’s reported figure.

On the cost front, it is imperative to mention that excess capacity utilization at almost all its factories has enabled First Solar to reduce cost-per-watt related to the Series 6 modules. This, in turn, has been lowering its operating expenses, thereby favorably contributing to its quarterly earnings performance.

Moreover, the company’s continued manufacturing execution and risk-reduced supply chain approach can be expected to have bolstered its gross margin, which in turn is likely to have bolstered its bottom line in the soon-to-be-reported quarter.

In line with such notable developments, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for its second-quarter earnings is pegged at 60 cents per share, indicating a 71.4% surge year over year.

At the beginning of the second quarter, First Solar completed the sale of its utility-scale solar project platform of approximately 10 gigawatts (GW)AC to Leeward Renewable Energy. Proceeds from the sale are expected to get duly reflected in the upcoming results.

First Solar, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise

Earnings Whispers

Our proven model does not conclusively predict an earnings beat for First Solar this time around. The combination of a positive Earnings ESP and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), 2 (Buy) or 3 (Hold) increases the chances of an earnings beat. But this is not the case here.

Earnings ESP: The company’s Earnings ESP is -3.04%. You can uncover the best stocks to buy or sell before they’re reported with our Earnings ESP Filter.

Zacks Rank: First Solar currently carries a Zacks Rank #3. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Upcoming Solar Releases

SunPower Corporation (SPWR - Free Report) is set to release second-quarter numbers on Aug 3.

Sunrun (RUN - Free Report) is set to release second-quarter 2021 results on Aug 5.

SolarEdge Technologies (SEDG - Free Report) is set to release second-quarter numbers on Aug 2.