First Solar Inc. (FSLR - Free Report) reported first-quarter 2020 adjusted earnings of 85 cents per share, which surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 24 cents by 254.2%. The reported figure also improved significantly from the prior-year quarter’s loss of 64 cents.
First Solar’s sales of $532.1 million in the reported quarter missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $556 million by 4.4%. However, the top line witnessed a marginal increase from the year-ago quarter’s $532 million.
In the first quarter, gross profit totaled $90.3 million, which surged significantly from $0.11 million reported in the year-ago quarter.
Total operating expenses increased 15.5% to $88.7 million due to higher selling, general and administrative expenses as well as escalated research and development expenses.
However, the company reported an operating income of $1.65 million against an operating loss of $76.6 million incurred in the year-ago quarter. The upside can primarily be attributable to significantly higher gross profit in the quarter.
First Solar Inc Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise
First Solar had $929.4 million of cash and cash equivalents as of Mar 31, 2020, down from $1,352.7 million as of Dec 31, 2019.
Long-term debt totaled $390.6 million at the end of the first quarter compared with $454.2 million as of Dec 31, 2019.
First Solar has withdrawn its 2020 guidance, given the uncertainty regarding the severity and duration of the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on the company’s operations and financial results as well as the energy and capital markets.
However, it issued its 2020 module production, operating expenses and capital expenditure guidance. First Solar expects 2020 module production to be 5.9 GWDC, including 5.7 GWDC of Series 6 and 0.2 GWDC of Series 4. It expects operating expenses of $340-$360 million and capital expenditures of $450-$550 million for 2020.
First Solar currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Recent Solar Releases
Enphase Energy (ENPH - Free Report) reported first-quarter 2020 adjusted earnings of 38 cents per share, which surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 32 cents by 18.8%. The bottom line also surged a massive 375% from 8 cents reported in the prior-year quarter.
SunPower (SPWR - Free Report) reported first-quarter 2020 adjusted loss of 10 cents per share, narrower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 21 cents and a loss of 41 cents in the year-ago quarter.
SolarEdge Technologies (SEDG - Free Report) reported first-quarter 2020 adjusted earnings of $1.03 per share, which missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.20 by 14.2%. The bottom-line figure, however, surged 47.1% from 70 cents registered in the prior-year quarter.
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