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Why Solar Stocks Popped Today

By Travis Hoium - Sep 27, 2013 at 4:33PM

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Is this meaningful or just another movement?

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 Trina Solar (NYSE: TSL) and Yingli Green Energy (NYSE: YGE) jumped 14% and 10%, respectively, today after news of an upgrade from Wall Street.

So what: Deutsche Bank analyst Vishal Shah upgraded both stocks to a buy rating, and has a price target of $18 for Trina Solar, and $8 for Yingli Green Energy. That's about a 20% upside for both stocks if the target price is met in a year. 

Now what: Shah is arguing that demand in China will pick up in the second half of this year, driven by a desire to take advantage of incentives that expire at year end. Overall, the prediction of higher demand is similar to China's own predictions, industry prediction, and what companies have said themselves, so it should be no surprise.

What would be a surprise is a profit from either Trina Solar or Yingli in the second half of the year. Trina has the best shot at making money, simply because it isn't as weighed down with debt as Yingli, so if you're looking for exposure to Chinese solar, that's the better bet. But I'd still look at a profitable company like JinkoSolar first, because it has $1 billion in project financing available, and a better balance sheet than either Trina or Yingli.

Interested in more info on Trina Solar? Add it to your watchlist by clicking here.

Fool contributor Travis Hoium has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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