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Solar Investor
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solarpete last won the day on January 15

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  1. Yes, that is correct--or at least no worse than the same risk. Here's how I implement that: I try to have only a SMALL position in a stock near its high. If it pulls back a little, but there is no negative news for the stock, I'll buy another small position. Ditto one more time--then if it goes down for a fourth day, I stop buying until I see the price stabilize and start to come back a little. Our solars are volatile enough that they'll usually bounce back and forth between small losses and small gains in any series of 3 consecutive trading days. Say the third position I bought (the one at the lowest price) goes back up a bit. I'll sell it and take that profit. If the stock now continues to rise, I still have the first and second positions in play. If it drops again, I'll rebuy that third position, but again stop there. If now the stock drops dramatically, of course I have losses in those 3 small positions--but I DON'T have the loss I would have if I had taken a full position. Which means I have buying power if and when I determine it's (reasonably) safe to re-enter the stock. And when I do, it's with more small positions, trading them to gradually take small profits until the stock reaches its prior level--when I still have those 3 original positions, which now come into play again. It does require a fair amount of initial investment capital to be able to establish that number of small positions in a number of stocks (I use about 5 or 6)--but then again, when I read you have some 120 assets in your approach, I'm quite sure my account is much smaller than yours. And I use margin--I find my gains usually more than outpace the margin interest I pay (which is tax-deductible from my gains). Of course, when using margin it's hugely important to avoid catastrophic losses leading to margin calls, which is another reason I developed this strategy. So by not owning much of a stock near its highs, but owning more and more of it at lower levels at a time when there is no negative news out about the stock, I've convinced myself that the more of a stock I own, the smaller the short-term risk.
  2. Yes, most gains come from just a few trading days--but as you note, so do most losses. So that "pairing to avoid losses" you mention is also a critical aspect. And as you say, it's almost impossible to know when those big moves come. So I am willing to accept missing out on the big gains, if I can also avoid the big losses (since in the past those losses have always more than wiped out my gains), and just be happy taking small gains consistently (even in times when other strategies yield larger gains), and letting time work in my favor. So far, that's worked for me--I did take some losses in that November collapse, but not nearly as much as I would have under my earlier strategy, and I've already recovered them again almost completely, thus preserving my gains for the year overall (instead of losing them all, which I most likely would have done under my earlier strategy). But while the long-term trend still should be solidly upward, this year looks like it could be quite choppy in solarland, so I have to stay nimble and not get sucked into positions that are too large when prices are high (which is always a temptation when prices are going up quickly).
  3. That's still quite a flurry there right at the end of the year. It shows the Chinese CAN execute large numbers in a short period of time if they want to. Now the question becomes, how much that was planned but not executed last year gets carried over into this year, instead of cancelled outright. And that seems to be an open question. As the article notes, estimates for China next year are from 20 GW to 40 GW. That's quite a difference. The rest of the world, however, seems to be moving full speed ahead, so we're no longer hostage to Chinese governmental policy. They can be a hindrance, or icing on the cake, but they no longer dictate our fate.
  4. Interesting. A few years ago, I read an opinion that was exactly the opposite--that person said "every minute your money is in the market, it's at risk of loss due to an unexpected event." They advocated finding a situation where an imminent upward move was likely for a given stock, riding that move for a small gain, then selling to take that small profit. Then go look for another such situation--possibly a continuation with the same stock, but not necessarily. The rationale is to be in any given stock only for a short period of time, to avoid a huge loss when unexpected news hits, unless you're unlucky enough to have such news hit while you're in your short trading window with that stock. Having suffered several such "unexpected events" in my 10-year experiment with buy-and-hold, I found his logic compelling, and constructed my current frequent-trading-of-small-lots-for-small-gains approach from it. And that approach worked very well last year (return well over 100%, even with the collapse in November). Interesting to hear that a quite different (if not exact opposite) approach also produced excellent results. Seems to indicate my success wasn't necessarily due to anything superior in my approach--perhaps more of a "rising tide lifting all boats?"
  5. Today DQ finally blew past FSLR's stock price and held its lead into the closing. Interesting run as of late. No news to speak of, and volume is average. But the sustained uptrend has been going on for a month now--AND we're closing in on 5- and 10-year highs. Looks like the market is certainly expecting good news for the next earnings report. It will be interesting to see if that optimism is validated.
  6. Oh boy--where have I heard THIS song before????
  7. You don't need to expand margins for earnings to expand--if you expand volume while keeping margins the same, your earnings will increase. That's exactly the business model we now see all solar poly/wafer/panel producers employing. I'd say it's risky, but if you can pull it off, it'll work. And since that's what everybody is doing now, it indicates their finance professionals think it's their best course of action. Sure, if you can increase margins on top of that, your earnings will increase even more--but it's not absolutely necessary. Do we need 200GW of global demand to keep everyone profitable? Maybe. But how much do we need to keep just the top players profitable? So far, they're doing just fine with the demand we have now.
  8. Exactly. There's a wide range of forecasts out there.
  9. It also shows their management (at least their past management--has it changed since 2012?) is just as crooked as any Chinese companies are accused of being.
  10. We've also now seen repeated statements from various sources, including some of the companies affected, that overseas markets are taking up the slack from China demand. So China paring back, for whatever reason (regulatory reform or an increased reliance on coal--which really flies in the face of their air pollution problem) is NOT affecting the business of these companies--at least not yet.
  11. Tired of gloom-and-doom forecasts? Try this one: https://pv-magazine-usa.com/2019/12/31/the-future-of-the-solar-plus-storage-industry-will-look-like-the-air-conditioning-business/ Love the last line: "From a growth perspective, we haven’t seen anything yet."
  12. There are articles out with growth figures all over the place. This one says 125GW in 2020. I've seen others that say anywhere from 100 to 145. I haven't done exhaustive research to confirm this, but my personal impression is past forecasts have usually been low. The article also says the annualized 5-year growth rate is 7%--again I think that's quite low. The impacts of climate change will only get worse. Public pressure around the world will continue to increase the demand for renewables, and solar is now at a very attractive price point. Add in the maturation of storage and smart inverters, and I don't see this train slowing down any time soon. All this just IMHO, of course.
  13. So GCL must see sufficient market demand to justify that sort of expenditure--and so must their banking source. These decisions aren't made without a cost/benefit analysis. Just sayn.
  14. Meanwhile, the upward price trend of DQ continues.
  15. It certainly should, based on their business outlook. But I lightened up my position quite a bit today, taking significant profits. Today's move is too far not to do that. Still have some, in case it keeps going, but now I have dry powder for the next pullback. This stock is single-handedly making me look like an investing genius (chuckle)….
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