Why SolarCity Shares Got Brighter

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of newly public SolarCity (NASDAQ: SCTY  ) were shining brighter, rising as much as 17% today after bumping its growth estimates for 2013.

So what: SolarCity, another project of Tesla founder Elon Musk, said that it expected its rooftop installations to jump 60% in 2013, to 250 megawatts. 2012 installations also topped expectations, coming at 156 MW over projections of 146. Unlike other solar companies, SolarCity does not manufacture solar panels, but leases them to homes and businesses, often charging a lower rate than standard electric utilities. Essentially, the company is a solar utility.

Now what: A hike in guidance always gets three cheers from the market, and with such a new stock the response is unsurprisingly even stronger. It's still very early in the SolarCity story. The company is not yet profitable, but shareholders can't argue with a 60% growth rate. The business model is untested, but for fans of Elon Musk and believers in solar in general, this stock is worth a closer look. Unlike much of the solar industry, the rapidly increasing supply favors SolarCity, providing toward its bottom line. Keep tabs on this developing story by adding it to your Watchlist here.  


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