Shares of the Chinese-based solar manufacturer JinkoSolar (NYSE: JKS) has surged above 100% this year as the demand for solar modules is expected to pick up in 2019. In addition, falling module prices would benefit firms like JinkoSolar with improved margins. The company is scheduled to report its fourth-quarter results on March 22 before the bell.
Earlier this month, Korean-based Hanwha Q Cells filed a patent infringement lawsuit claiming that JinkoSolar has used its patented solar cell passivation technology on its solar cells. However, JinkoSolar has refuted these allegations stating that there is no legal merit. It also added the lawsuit would not affect its operations in any way. Investors would be expecting more updates from the management of any possible implications.
Based on the anticipated strong demand for solar module shipments, JinkoSolar last quarter guided solar module shipments for the fourth quarter to be between 3.7 GW and 4.0 GW. For the full year 2018, shipments are expected in the range of 11.5 GW to 11.8 GW.
Analysts are expecting the solar firm to report earnings of $0.63 per share, which is a big jump from $0.12 recorded last year. Revenue is forecasted to see an increase of 24.5% to $1.22 billion. Investors would be hoping that the company would continue the momentum from the last quarter due to improved macros in the industry, which would be beneficial for the firm.
In the third quarter, Chinese solar giant revenues improved by 4.3% to $974.8 million, pushing net profit to $27.5 million or $0.18 per share. However, analysts were looking for earnings of $0.61 a share on revenue of $989 million. The company similar to its peers was hit by lower demand and falling solar module prices which impacted profitability for the solar energy firms.
Globally, there is improved demand for solar panels as the module prices have come down. Solar projects are going to increase in 2019 and beyond, which is a long-term growth driver for JinkoSolar. The company would also benefit from increased shipments from China, US, Europe, and Middle East regions in the near future.
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