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Why SunEdison Inc Shares Hit a New 52-Week Low Today

By Travis Hoium - Feb 18, 2016 at 1:28PM

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Hawaiian Electric dropped a bomb that shows how much trouble SunEdison Inc is in right now.

What: Only two days after SunEdison Inc (SUNEQ) stock popped, because hedge funds announced stakes in the company, the stock hit a new 52-week low, dropping as much as 18% in early trading Thursday.

So what: SunEdison announced moves aimed at creating an "asset-light strategy." That included selling a silicon wafer facility in Malaysia, shutting down a polysilicon facility in Texas, and changing the focus of an Oregon facility to "cost effective R&D and technology demonstration center." The moves will result in $437 million in impairment charges for Q4 2015. 

Restructuring is probably coming too late for SunEdison and the bigger news of the day is Hawaiian Electric terminating contracts for 148 megawatts of solar because SunEdison missed multiple project deadlines. This is unprecedented in the solar industry, and since these assets were supposed to be sold to D.E. Shaw to reduce debt this could help drive the company to insolvency. 

Now what: The odds of SunEdison avoiding bankruptcy get slimmer by the day and this is new evidence that the company isn't even executing on projects it has contracts for. If it can't do that, how can we believe management's plans to sell assets on a time frame and profit level that will avoid bankruptcy. I think SunEdison's days are numbered and even Hawaiian Electric publicly stated the company is in "financial distress." That's not the kind of stock investors should be buying today.

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