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We use PayPal, a global standard for payments. Nothing is handled on the site. All the members who would like to receive the copy of September please let me know on this thread. Check your PM, explo. There is a second product, being build which is a database of prices, which would give an idea of ASP to a buyer.

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[From Yahoo's TSL board] Finally? For the past 5 weeks module ASP on spot markets have been 66 cents. This stabilization was last seen 11 months ago around 94 cents, but then the decline continued. I think lowest bottom possible is 55 cents, but that would required imploding demand. Demand is picking up in December, so a continued decline is not very likely in mid December. Possibly a quick push towards 55 cents to clear inventory end of year or due to low season in beginning of next year. Or this could form a bottom based on rising demand in Q4 and the good inventory depletion we saw in Q3. Anyway the bottom, 65 or 55, is likely here or less than one or two quarters away. A rough ASP model is long-term trend component around negative 10% per year. The cycle component around this trend has heavy magnitude, around factor 2 diff between top and bottom in heavy cycles(adjusted for trend component). Cycles seems to last around 4 years. Heavy cycle example 2010 1.22 - 2012 0.55 - 2014 0.99 - 2016 0.45. The example does not reflect 2010 and 2012 actuals, discrepancy explained further down. Normalized price is around the mid point between of tops and bottoms, cycle magnitude can vary. I know some might think the actual drop from 1.80 in 2010 to 0.65 in 2012 was only reflecting the long-term trend component of declining prices according to the learning curve model and that there's no cycle component. I'm certain that that's a too simple model of linear extrapolation, that can only lead to mispredicting the curve and cronic inferior positioning. Above model is not correct, since it is still a quite simple model (or simply A model), but better I believe. In a model of ASP and cumulative installation correlation as indicated by the past 30 years of install and ASP data, one can also expect installs to take a short-term leap to align with latest ASP crash (this could be soon) and then a consolitation period where installs grow less for some time and ASP decline trend slows down for a period (this phase should come eventually, but it is hard to say when). So the long-term linear -10% trend plus a 4-year short high magnitute cycle component it too simple. With also a longer medium term (say 10 year) technology step component the model would fit better, but that medium term perpspective complicates maybe more than we need. Long-term potential and short-term risk is often primary investor focus. A big technology/cost step component I think we've seen now, where 1.80 top cycle ASP in 2010 was cut 60 cents to my tech step adjusted 1.22 2010 top cycle ASP. This 60 cent tech haircut might be slightly overestimated (some of the cost cuts have probably been macro cycles driven, e.g. low silver price and similar) and then instead the cycle factor of latest cycle have been larger than 2. Good luck with the 2013 positioning.

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Check your PM, explo. There is a second product, being build which is a database of prices, which would give an idea of ASP to a buyer.

Thanks I'll check it out and follow up in PM. ASP tracking sound interesting too.

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Guest nanofrogfish_spf

Researchers at Princeton have come up with a very innovative way to significantly increase the efficiency of solar cells. This could both simultaneously increase efficiencies and lower costs. What makes this really interesting is that it can be used with existing solar technologies, although it hasn't been tested on silicon yet, but the results using organic plastics are incredible. They claim they can capture up to 96% of the light that hits it! These are the kinds of future technologies that are going to help propel solar past grid parity and increasingly become a larger share of the global power structure. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121206203419.htm

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Hi All,SPVI in cooperation with Solarzoom is offering September Data for Free to members of this board. Please send me the message on private messaging that you would like to have it. This data is confidential and I would like to ask you not to post numbers or pass it around. This is another reason why I would like to know who wants it, so someone will not say I got this and thought I can do whatever with it. All the conversations I have witnessed recently on this board , would make a lot of sense if you see this data. It takes solid research and access, to obtain it. In comparison to the time and the effort by Solarzoom we are all lucky to have this opportunity to see ahead of the curve, sitting in front of the computer screen. I worked almost for two years on SPVI to build an alternative source of info and data for American and Canadian, perhaps Western World Investor. Now when I finally managed to reach some meaningful contacts and bring some excellent information to the US market directly from China, its seems as it is not really anyone's interest. Big surprise. I will continue to do this until Solarzoom will pull the plug. They have 200,000 subscribers in China and earn $105 per month for access to this and additional info (like ASP to countries, wafer companies updates etc.). This is exclusive just to SPVI what they are doing obtained on a personal contact and if if I fail, like any business venture, they will take the business elsewhere at the end. Example: The report Greentech Media put out for 50 companies being a repeat of their financial data and someone's opinion costs $3000 for individual license. There is more understating of the market in a single page looking at the data of shipments and how each company is doing by checking the Q3 results, looking at supplemental PowerPoint for a total cost of $25. If I can succeed in this format I can negotiate other facts to be added. Thank you for your attention

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Guest singular

I agree with Explo. I was a regular on the Yahoo boards but did not post very much. Went there for info because I am a SOL investor. I know from personal experience that building an online community takes much time. Just keep posting important content and people will come. I also agree that offering free content to members initially will build your membership quicker. There are many things you could do over time to offer different content for different levels of membership. best of luck, Joe

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Hi singular, first of all, big welcome to the board. I hope you can become a valuable contributor and find this place useful. I appreciate your comments. I posted a thread here for those who would like to receive the September 2012 report for free, otherwise offered at $1.00 I can already think of discounts for members of this board using discount codes etc. I just have to figure it out how. Please contact me for the copy of shipments for September through this board’s private message system. I will be able to show you what we dealing with. Be aware that data is owned by Solarzoom and the giveaway is my commission. I am not doing this for leaving but at least trying to cover the costs of running the site, editorials, proofreads, designs, hosting etc. Cheers

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November results show 14% average improvement over the October. The Q4 2 month revenues show however 30% reduction versus 2 month contribution over same layout of Q3. So either December is extremely strong or Taiwan has lost again its edge over Chinese. That loss of edge would be in case of cells being sold for the US market. In case of India investigation against Taiwan is going to basically stop buying form the country. Some movement on module front to bring the capacity in Taiwan, but nowhere competitive with tier 1s of China.

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Great article, thanks. You included YGE in the group that outsource wafers. I thought they did not do that..?
Sorry, either outsource or experiment you wrote. So YGE experiments. Does any of TSL, STP or HSOL do that too?

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Hi explo, YGE and STP are experimenting. HSOL and STP are the buyers, but Honey is made on a sorted wafer. They insist honey is build on own HP wafer.

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Guest spiritcraft

I am here as well... I recognize a few names from yahoo but perhaps some names have changed. I have been around a long, long time and still await the "revolution" that many of us expect in PV. Thanks for the board and site Odyd12. Yahoo is completely out to lunch. I am very much looking forward to being able to read coherent posts regarding Solar PV and to share again as well.

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Thanks for coming over. That is the idea. Good conversation about solar investing. I hope you can contribute, it is just few of us here now, but we certainly have quality in mind. Glad to have you here

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Guest spiritcraft

Thank you, I will. So where is it best to share links aside from company specific things or do you just take care of that? Very much interested in progress of new markets, projects etc. I guess you have that pretty much covered but I always get obscure tidbits in my Google news searches.

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Guest nanofrogfish_spf

EU ProSun President and VP of SolarWorld Milan Nitzschke this week debated Gregory Spanoudakis, President of Canadian Solar European Operations and Chairman of the Alliance for Affordable Solar Energy (AFASE) at the British House of Commons. From the article, it sounds like Nitzschke threw out a few cliche's and half-truths, while Spanoudakis hit him with some hard facts... A couple of good quotes from the article; "Nitzschke agreed that in the beginning the European industry needed Chinese manufacturers in order to make solar competitive." Spanoudakis remained optimistic. “Certainly there is a willingness by all parties to talk” he told PV-Tech. “It’s a question of bringing all personalities and egos to the table. If we leave our egos and personalities at the door and talk, certainly I think there is constructive discussion that can take place. Solarworld needs to stop blaming everyone else for their failings, and stop trying to delay solar's march to grid parity...what's good for Solarworld is not necessarily good for the rest of the world (except maybe big oil and coal). http://www.pv-tech.org/news/chinese_dumping_poison_to_european_solar_market

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http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=211850&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1768131&highlight= "The company expects to take a charge of $80 million to $90 million related to the write down of the majority of its DSS inventory and other inventory related charges." This is close to half their total inventory, so the write down of the DSS furnaces must be massive. It could be an opportunity for strong Chinese players with high utilization of this type of wafer equipment to pick it up cheaply, since GTAT already adjusted down its cost for it to pennies on the dollar. On the other hand LDK is sitting on 4 GW of this type of equipment and 3 GW of that is not utilized. Time to consolidate and move furnaces to those that make value of them. Meanwhile JASO took another huge impairment charge on its multi wafer plant (Donghai). First close to 40m in 11Q4 and now close to 50m in 12Q3. So not everyone knows how to use these furnaces competitively. Otherwise JASO would be a candidate to pick this up to further increase control of its supply. Same with CSIQ, but they failed in this area even when it was less competitive and chose to try systems andproject development segments instead. LDK makes wafers of decent quality, but seem to not be efficient enough in this compared to GCL and SOL who don't outsource the tech and consumables as much, i.e. they know better what they do. GCL seems to have utilization issues mainly because risky exposure from big bet on supplying the incremental demand for Chinese cell making, which have been weak. SOL seems to run above 100% with 655 MW shipments in Q4 and might want to add more DSS capacity. They discontinued half their mono equipment in Q3 and now only has 10% mono, which makes sense since they can create the same wafer value using the Virtus A++ tech and process at 10 cents lower cost. There will be a gap until the phosphorous doped HiCz from GTAT revives the mono track. The first HiCz gen using gallium doping will probably still not be PV plant economical compared to Virtus A++. Mono tech will just as PV plant business be interest positions for SOL to follow development, learn and maybe ramp at opportunity. Other ideas on how to handle the manufacturing equipment glut? Notable in GTAT reporting is also that poly equipment sales is strong, while wafer equipment sales have completely crashed.

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Guest Klothilde

Only green arrows on PVInsights this week. Mono Wafers up 3%. Of course one has to take into account the low activity during last week's X-mas break. However this signal is more than enough to put us on alert to a potential bottoming out that may become clearer over the next weeks. Mono products seem to be further ahead in hitting the bottom. I think this has to do with the increasing demand from Japan, where high efficiency generates a good premium (high tariff / space highly limited and costly), and the demand from China which has minimum efficiency requirements in place (at least for Golden Sun). Any thoughts on this?

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Nice to see solar stocks go up two days in a row. What is the lasting effect of this with exception that SunPower plants are getting bought by Buffet? Any comments?

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Guest singular

I agree it was great to see. I think that some of it, LDK going from .71 to over 1.90, is rather silly. But in general, i think this rally will last. might not be an every day thing, but will move up in 2013. The stock market is a big crooked game. Fundamentals rarely matter to the degree they should. What matters is what the big boys are buying and selling. That moves the market. Hedge funds took the solars down 90% from their highs. They made money hand over fist. I think now they take it the other direction. You will slowly start to see good news trickle in and upgrades spinning the news in directions they want to try to justify their new valuations. 2013 will be good year indeed. I am hoping that SOL will be one of the big winners. I believe they will.

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So it sounds as technical rally buying on impulse. One would wish for a fundamental one, but I am afraid we can only hope for that sometime in Q3 perhaps. We still need consolidation. At least I am hearing glut is being reduced, but demand remains illusive as far as specific group of companies, US-listed in particular. I would like to see strong to survive and weak to go away. I just do not see this clearly anywhere. I also think this rally has frequent pattern associated with new year, when Q4 releases are out things will be dropping rapidly or perhaps before. So I am not too convinced it will last. Nice to see it for sure.

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Guest nanofrogfish_spf

I agree this is primarily a technical rally that lit a short-covering fuse, especially in TSL. However, just because the market did something the last year or 2, doesn’t necessarily mean that it will repeat, especially when everyone expects it to. Although the day-traders may try to play off the Q4 earnings, everyone knows they’re going to be bad. And the same with Q1 guidance. So to obsess over these short-term earnings may have one missing out on something much bigger. The real question is; are things starting to look better. Starting early in 2012 there was hope for the sector fueling an early year rally. But there were significant headwinds that helped knock the sector back down...some real and some imagined. From the doom & gloom predicted from the Germany tariff cuts (who btw installed record solar this year...all these clowns were completely wrong on that), to the US tariff battle, to the continually falling ASP’s... too much doubt and uncertainty in the sector, with no earnings for support, for a rally to continue. I believe stabilization and steady growth in the sector, and the return to profitability for some will be the story line for 2013. Project work could be the savior of many. And SPWR just started that theme off on a very nice note that has brought a lot of renewed attention on the sector. And if one believes that in Q3 the fundamentals will be positive for some, and the market is said to be 6-months forward-looking (may be a stretch these days), then why wouldn’t the sector be rallying now, especially since they had bounced off ridiculously low bankruptcy valuations? They’re actually just getting back to something a little more reasonable (for now anyways). The larger funds for the most part don’t day-trade. They will more likely accumulate/sell positions over a period of time. The industry obviously has huge upside for the winners. I would think at least some of these guys would be smart enough to see this. So whenever this run-up and the short-term profit-taking ends, then I think companies will be bought and sold more based on their individual performances and outlooks...this should result in some going back down while others continue to rise. Obviously no one knows what’s going to happen. But if the fundamentals are returning, even if it’s in the 2H, then I think this rally will continue (with a lot of the usual volatility of course). Buying something at bankruptcy levels, and then watching it turn into a huge successful global company, is where fortunes are made...if you continue to hold on long enough to see it thru. Picking the wrong company to back is also where fortunes can be lost. It’s all risk/reward tolerance based on thorough DD, and your investing timeframe. I’ve been beating the drum for awhile now that 2013 is going to be a good one overall for the solar industry, and especially for those companies emerging positively from the ashes. Everything I’ve seen so far is supporting this. I think this run-up is just the first sign of acknowledgement of that (obviously many of the bad companies are just going along for the ride right now). 2013 is going to be a great year for solars...IMHO

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Hi explo, YGE and STP are experimenting. HSOL and STP are the buyers, but Honey is made on a sorted wafer. They insist honey is build on own HP wafer.

Today's news release form Yingli suggest that their experimentation period now is over. They have own HP wafer and cell. It will be very tight for anyone to move to category of progress when they will run out of money. The next set of the technological evolution will leave companies in the dust. Based on the Solarzoom reports mono is back in full swing and n-type mono and Kaneka in Taiwan are making waves. Yingli is going not only live but prosper. http://solarpvinvestor.com/tech-news/405-yingli-green-energy-announces-significant-progress-in-ingot-casting

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Guest abcdefgjoho

technicals were always heavily important for solars since day1. i started looking at solars when tsl went public and since then the technicals always were key. it is very positive for comps like csiq to be trading above the 200 dma right now. watch that line i say. in the past in 80% of all cases for solars it was best to stay with that trend. if q3 2013 will be better as you note odyd then this explains the turnaround as the stock market normally trades the future - in my opinion normally it trades 6 months in advance. i see two key risk factors to watch for 2013. 1) china needs to let companies go bancrupt. this is really needed now. otherwise it will just stay bad for everyone. 2) the EU ruling in may/june. I have no idea where this is now but with current china policies of keeping everyone alive I get afraid to be honest. yes, i saw the note of china wanting to change that but havent seen much results of that new ruling. hope for them it comes in time. to be clear - yes, china can take the US ruling as it is cells only and a way smaller market than europe. but if we get a harsh EU ruling you better be out china solars.

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Guest nanofrogfish_spf

abc, on item-1, I think China will have at least some success in permanently weeding out many of smaller Tier-2 & 3 companies, and if they would just let LDK die a natural death that would be extremely positive. The second item I believe is the biggest headwind, especially due to the uncertainty factor. There are many possible and variable outcomes...ranging from a complete agreement between the EU and China, down to a huge tariff that will be a big setback for all Chinese-based solars (and to the EU solar industry as well...those FIT-free solar plants planned in Spain will need to be delayed for a few years). And although the global solar market is growing very quickly, EU is still the biggest % of most companies business. So the only thing we can really say for sure, is that as we come closer to these decisions, our favorite shorts will be out in full force predicting that whatever the worst case scenario is, that is what’s going to happen... Depending on how things go in negotiations, stocks could certainly see significant pressure leading up to the final announcements. If it’s not the worst-case scenario, they would also probably bounce back quickly. On the other hand, any positive news on the negotiating front will send these stocks higher, and a settlement could send them soaring. Keep in mind that the Chinese have also had plenty of time to prepare for this, and are known for acting quickly to adjust to market changes. So in the case of tariffs, their adjustments would be interesting, but the details would have to be defined first of course (what’s included and how much). It would also be interesting to see if it’s a 1-rate for all, or if individual companies got different rates. I personally don’t think the worst case scenario is even remotely likely to happen...but as we get closer to the decision then reducing your holdings, or buying some put protection, would be a prudent thing to do, and that’s what I’ll be doing if it gets that far. The market will almost certainly put pressure on the shares, more due to the uncertainty than substance. But once the uncertainty is removed, I don’t see any other real major headwinds of this level. In CSIQ’s case, in their IR presentation they have a pie chart showing percentage of revenue by region for 2008 and Q3 2012. In 2008, the EU was 89.5% of their business, but in Q3 it was less than half (47.8%). And for 2013, with over 50% of revenue coming from projectsoutside the EU, and with Japan and Asia and the Middle East and SA and Africa and Australia growing, the EU could be as low as 20% next year. So at least at this stage of the game, a bad outcome would not cripple the Chinese-based solars nearly as much as if had happened even just a year or 2 ago.

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