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With many analysts bullish on SolarCity Corp. (Nasdaq: SCTY) stock right now, should investors buy it?
It's clear why investors are tempted by SCTY shares…
Visionary Elon Musk of Tesla Motors Inc. (Nasdaq: TSLA) is chairman of the board.
And solar power installations is a huge growth industry. According to the Solar Energy Industries Association, photovoltaic (PV) installations in the United States have soared from 852 megawatts in 2010 to 6,201 megawatts in 2014. That's a sevenfold increase in just four years.
SolarCity has been a key player in that growth. With more than one-third of the market, the San Mateo, Calif.-based company is the biggest residential solar installer in the United States.
Over the past two years, quarterly revenue grew from $28.2 million (in Q1 of 2013) to $67.48 million (in Q1 of 2015). The company's guidance for the current quarter forecasts a 42% to 50% jump in revenue to $86 million to $92 million.
What's more, the market for solar installations has barely been tapped. SolarCity estimates that just 1.1% of homes that could install solar in the U.S. have done so.
That's why so many analysts like SCTY stock…
Wall Street's High Hopes for SCTY Stock
After SolarCity reported its Q1 earnings earlier this month, Credit Suisse Group (NYSE: CS) raised its price target on SCTY stock from $97 to $99. SCTY stock closed Wednesday (yesterday) at $61.27, so that target represents a 61.5% gain.
Other analysts are nearly as optimistic in their price targets on SCTY stock. Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) has a target of $92 on SCTY shares. Merrill Lynch has forecast a SCTY stock price of $95.
But what these analysts are missing is SolarCity stock carries some very serious risks…
Plenty of investors recognize those risks – the short interest in SCTY is a lofty 34% of the float.
About the Author
David Zeiler, Associate Editor for Money Morning at Money Map Press, has been a journalist for more than 35 years, including 18 spent at The Baltimore Sun. He has worked as a writer, editor, and page designer at different times in his career. He's interviewed a number of well-known personalities - ranging from punk rock icon Joey Ramone to Apple Inc. co-founder Steve Wozniak.
Over the course of his journalistic career, Dave has covered many diverse subjects. Since arriving at Money Morning in 2011, he has focused primarily on technology. He's an expert on both Apple and cryptocurrencies. He started writing about Apple for The Sun in the mid-1990s, and had an Apple blog on The Sun's web site from 2007-2009. Dave's been writing about Bitcoin since 2011 - long before most people had even heard of it. He even mined it for a short time.
Dave has a BA in English and Mass Communications from Loyola University Maryland.