What happened

Hydrogen fuel cell stocks rocketed on Monday alongside investor interest in clean energy stocks as the two-week COP26 climate summit got underway in Glasgow, Scotland, and President Joe Biden's reconciliation infrastructure bill inches closer to passing. Big numbers from electric vehicle (EV) manufacturers further fueled the fire. By market close Monday, here's how much the top hydrogen stocks had rallied:

  • Plug Power (PLUG 4.78%): Up 8.8%.
  • FuelCell Energy (FCEL 7.00%): Up 19.3%.
  • Bloom Energy (BE 4.49%): Up 3.5%.

So what

Fuel cell stocks have been red-hot in recent days, with each of the three stocks blasting double-digits higher in the month of October. Plug Power and Bloom Energy, in particular, shot up more than 50% each, buoyed by a series of deals and multiple analyst stock upgrades. As is often the case, when one stock gets a strong analyst upgrade, other stocks within the industry attract attention as well.

That appears to be the case today. Last Friday, Piper Sandler analyst Pearce Hammond upgraded his price target on Plug Power stock to $46 a share from $37 per share based on the company's latest sales outlook for 2022 and upcoming catalysts from COP26 and Biden's infrastructure bill.

Person analyzing rising stock price charts on smartphone in front of stock price display board.

Image source: Getty Images.

The climate change conference is held every year, but COP26 is the first such big gathering of world leaders since the COVID-19 pandemic. Importantly, many expect the leaders from over 100 nations who have gathered at the conference to commit billions of dollars to clean energy to hit their decarbonization goals, with green hydrogen and EV technologies touted to be top priorities. EVs are already on a roll, what with several EV manufacturers reporting solid order and delivery numbers for the month of October on Nov. 1.

Meanwhile, reports suggest Biden's newly proposed $1.75 trillion reconciliation infrastructure bill could be passed this week, which could be a huge trigger for clean energy stocks as the bill proposes more than $500 billion spending on climate actions, including nearly $130 billion on renewable energy. Fuel-cell companies could win big as hydrogen and fuel-cell technologies are already finding more takers by the day, as evidenced by the several deals and partnerships that Plug Power and Bloom Energy have announced in recent weeks.

FuelCell Energy, meanwhile, may not have had such luck in terms of deals or contracts yet, but it's an established fuel-cell player nonetheless given its decades of experiences and a strong line-up of global customers. That said, the dramatic surge in FuelCell shares on Monday hints at yet other underlying reasons why the stock shot up.

Chart showing rise in price for Plug Power, FuelCell Energy, and Bloom Energy.

PLUG data by YCharts

First, it seems to be playing catch-up after lagging behind larger rivals Bloom Energy and Plug Power last month. Second, FuelCell Energy was a hot topic on Reddit Monday as some users speculated the company to be a potentially big beneficiary if Biden's reconciliation bill were to pass, considering that U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut is a Democrat. FuelCell Energy is headquartered in Danbury, Connecticut, after all.

Now what

Clean energy is, undeniably, the future of energy, and interest in hydrogen fuel cell technologies is clearly picking up. Plug Power, for example, sees torrid growth ahead, having recently projected an almost 65% growth in sales, or gross billings, for 2021 to the tune of $825 million to $850 million. By 2025, Plug Power projects it could clock $3 billion in annual sales. 

With these companies also expected to release their quarterly earnings in the coming days, with Bloom Energy set to report on Nov. 4, investor interest in these fuel-cell stocks will likely remain high. Mark your calendars, as you wouldn't want to miss any numbers from these hot stocks.