Critical Contrast: First Solar (NASDAQ:FSLR) & LDK Solar (NASDAQ:LDKYQ)

First Solar (NASDAQ:FSLR) and LDK Solar (OTCMKTS:LDKYQ) are both oils/energy companies, but which is the better business? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their valuation, earnings, profitability, dividends, risk, institutional ownership and analyst recommendations.

Risk and Volatility

First Solar has a beta of 1.3, meaning that its share price is 30% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, LDK Solar has a beta of 6.17, meaning that its share price is 517% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent ratings for First Solar and LDK Solar, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
First Solar 1 2 8 0 2.64
LDK Solar 0 0 0 0 N/A

First Solar currently has a consensus target price of $71.30, indicating a potential upside of 32.44%. Given First Solar’s higher possible upside, equities analysts plainly believe First Solar is more favorable than LDK Solar.


This table compares First Solar and LDK Solar’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
First Solar -0.14% -0.07% -0.05%
LDK Solar N/A N/A N/A

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares First Solar and LDK Solar’s revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
First Solar $2.24 billion 2.53 $144.33 million $1.36 39.58
LDK Solar N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A

First Solar has higher revenue and earnings than LDK Solar.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

61.3% of First Solar shares are held by institutional investors. 0.7% of First Solar shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.


First Solar beats LDK Solar on 5 of the 9 factors compared between the two stocks.

First Solar Company Profile

First Solar, Inc. provides photovoltaic (PV) solar energy solutions in the United States and internationally. It operates in two segments, Modules and Systems. The Components segment designs, manufactures, and sells cadmium telluride solar modules that convert sunlight into electricity. This segment offers its products to integrators and operators of PV solar power systems. The Systems segment provides turn-key PV solar power systems or solar solutions, such as project development; engineering, procurement, and construction; and operating and maintenance services to utilities, independent power producers, commercial and industrial companies, and other system owners. The company was formerly known as First Solar Holdings, Inc. and changed its name to First Solar, Inc. in 2006. First Solar, Inc. was founded in 1999 and is headquartered in Tempe, Arizona.

LDK Solar Company Profile

LDK Solar Co., Ltd., through its subsidiaries, designs, develops, manufactures, and markets photovoltaic (PV) products in the People's Republic of China, Europe, the Asia Pacific, and North America. The company operates through two segments, Polysilicon and Other PV Products. It produces and sells solar-grade and electronic-grade polysilicon. The company also manufactures and sells multicrystalline and monocrystalline solar wafers to manufacturers of solar cells and solar modules; and PV cells and PV modules. In addition, it provides solar module processing services; designs and develops solar farm projects, as well as offers related engineering, procurement, and construction services for solar farm projects; and sells silicon materials, which include ingots and polysilicon scraps. LDK Solar CO., Ltd. was founded in 2005 and is based in Xinyu, the People's Republic of China.

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