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DOW Focuses on Solar Shingles

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The Dow Chemical Company announced that its POWERHOUSE Solar Shingles will be available to homeowners in New York, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, Washington D.C., Louisiana and Michigan. The POWERHOUSE solar shingles were available in Colorado, Northern California and Central Texas since early 2012.

The POWERHOUSE solar shingle has some unique features. It includes a custom designed array that complements the style of the homeowners while fulfilling their energy saving goals. It comes with a solar inverter that converts Direct Current (DC) into Alternating Current (AC) to cater to homes’ power needs. The system also helps to monitor real-time energy production from an internet connection. POWERHOUSE solar shingle system is certified as both solar and roofing product.

Dow is collaborating with DR Horton in Denver and Imagine Homes in San Antonio for creating solar communities using POWERHOUSE as a standard feature in their new homes. As a result, three green homebuilding technology leaders including McStain Neighborhoods, Brookfield Residential, and Cobblestone Homes, have come forward to promote Dow POWERHOUSE.

McStain Neighborhoods – an award-winning Denver-Boulder developer and homebuilder – will offer Dow POWERHOUSE as an upgrade option at their Indian Peaks South neighborhood in Lafayette, Colorado. Secondly, the homebuilding division of Brookfield Residential – recognized for quality, design and lifestyle building – will offer Dow POWERHOUSE as a standard feature in their homes at Midtown, a new community near downtown Denver. Lastly, Cobblestone Homes, an authorized dealer of the product, will feature Powerhouse shingles in its new models in the mid-Michigan market.

Last month, Dow released its third quarter 2012 results. The company earned 42 cents a share in the quarter, down from 69 cents (or 62 cents excluding special items) a year ago. However, earnings in the quarter topped the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 37 cents. Dow’s profit tumbled 39% year over year to $497 million as lower pricing dragged down its sales in the quarter. The company also witnessed weak demand for its products in the quarter, largely stemming from the recessionary conditions in Europe.  

Revenues slipped 9.7% (or 7% on an adjusted basis) year over year to $13,637 million in the quarter, missing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $14,130 million. Sales fell across all segments except Agricultural Sciences, which was the only bright spot in the quarter. Revenues in Europe slid 10%, largely due to unfavorable currency translation.

The company competes with EI DuPont de Nemours & Co. and currently retains a Zacks #3 Rank that translates to a short-term (1 to 3 months) Hold rating. We currently have a long-term (more than 6 months) Neutral recommendation on the stock.

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