Plug Power (PLUG -2.24%) stock wasn't looking all that powerful this week. That's curious, as the recently passed Inflation Reduction Act -- plus a new green energy initiative in the European Union -- should benefit makers of alternative-power solutions, like this company.
But other factors weighed on investors. Because of this, Plug Power's stock was down by more than 15% as of Thursday evening, according to data compiled by S&P Global Market Intelligence.
Those investors were rattled by the news on Tuesday that obscure Canadian peer Loop Energy has developed a fuel-cell solution that essentially promises better fuel economy than a traditional diesel engine. What's more, Loop's offering is cheaper than Plug Power's competing technology.
The still-nascent hydrogen fuel-cell segment is at a highly theoretical stage. As early stages tend to be volatile, investors can react strongly to positive or negative news that affects their stock. To an extent, this explains this week's sharp pullback in Plug Power shares.
Another factor is the company's disclosure that it's registering more common stock for its stock option and incentive plan. This represents a big expansion, as just over 17.5 million shares will be added to the current tally, for an aggregate of slightly over 40 million.
Bonus stock payouts to top managers are standard in relatively early-stage companies, but investors may feel that this growing pile of stock could be better used for other purposes.
The Loop Energy news is certainly worth keeping an eye on, and it's always helpful to monitor in-house stock-compensation levels. I don't think either or both of these developments are sufficient to turn Plug Power bulls into bears, as the company still has plenty of potential if hydrogen is adopted as a widespread alternative-energy solution in the future.