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Bright lights among renewable energy stocks

swon@globeandmail.com

WHAT ARE WE LOOKING FOR?

More clean energy plays.

Given that U.S. President Barack Obama has made renewable energy and climate change a key part of his mandate, we will look today at more stocks in this niche.

The sector also has potential even though the price of oil, trading in the range of $70 (U.S.) per barrel, is still well below the $147 reached last summer. Some pundits still see the commodity price heading higher as supply shrinks with the slowdown in exploration because of plunging crude oil prices.

Yesterday, we dealt with companies in the PowerShares WilderHill Progressive Energy Portfolio exchange-traded fund (ETF). That fund focuses on transitional energy technologies, such as ones that improve the use of fossil fuels by progressively reducing carbon and other pollution.

TODAY'S SCREEN

We look at PowerShares WilderHill Clean Energy Portfolio ETF. This fund, which is based on the WilderHill Clean Energy Index, holds mostly small- to mid-sized firms focused on renewable energy sources and clean technologies.

The fund, which trades under the symbol PBW, rose 7 cents (U.S.) yesterday to close at $10.21 on the New York Stock Exchange. That's up from a 52-week low of $5.78 in March.

WHAT DID WE FIND?

Half of the stocks don't have earnings growth estimates for next year, but most of the ones that do are expected to post double- or triple-digit earnings growth. Most of the price-earnings ratios for the growth stocks based on next year's earnings are in the double digits. Investors might want to wait for a bit of pullback to find an entry point. All currencies are in U.S. dollars.

*****

Earnings estimates for members of the PowerShares WilderHill Clean Energy Portfolio ETF
CompanyTickerCountryPrice US$ June 171-mo % price chgThis fiscal year EPS $ est. This fiscal year EPS gwth %This year P/ENext fiscal year EPS $ est.Next fiscal year EPS gwth %Next year P/EDiv Yld (%)EPS 5-yr hist gwth
Amer Supercond.AMSC-QUS24.808.50.03NA871.40.461509.254.2NANA
Gushan Environ.GU-NKY2.19-2.70.11-75.919.30.47316.74.60.8NA
MEMC Elec Mater.WFR-NUS19.1020.60.33-89.958.01.20265.415.9NA13.2
Yingli Green YGE-NKY12.7550.00.38-50.333.30.94146.613.5NANA
OM GroupOMG-NUS27.548.90.77-79.135.81.82136.815.1NA34.1
Suntech PowerSTP-NCN17.5022.00.33-49.652.60.72115.024.5NA29.6
SunPower CorpSPWRA-QUS28.0111.81.07-53.126.21.9078.014.7NA90.1
Ultralife CorpULBI-QUS6.70-8.80.47-40.314.40.8275.18.2NA19.3
Trina SolarTSL-NKY22.5833.21.29-43.717.52.2473.610.1NA54.5
Advanced BatteryABAT-QUS3.788.90.3924.79.80.6055.26.3NANA
Quanta ServicesPWR-NUS22.723.90.81-8.428.21.1744.919.5NA51.0
Itron IncITRI-QUS57.3517.82.45-27.123.43.4842.116.5NA33.1
Calpine CorpCPN-NUS10.391.00.26NA39.70.3740.728.3NA70.8
Zoltek Cos IncZOLT-QUS10.7044.60.30-49.235.70.4239.225.6NA4.4
Fuel Systems FSYS-QUS20.6811.41.39-30.114.91.7424.811.9NA50.5
GT Solar IntlSOLR-QUS5.757.10.51-16.611.30.6324.49.1NANA
Ormat TechORA-NUS39.005.01.3419.829.11.6522.923.70.614.3
First SolarFSLR-QUS168.31-5.17.1969.623.48.7321.419.3NA340.8
Cree IncCREE-QUS28.608.50.6474.144.40.7617.437.8NA-21.9
Air Prod & ChemAPD-NUS64.374.53.95-20.516.34.5916.314.02.712.6
Energy Conv DevsENER-QUS15.877.20.63595.325.40.7215.821.9NA-41.8
SoquicomSQM-NCL35.361.51.67-12.621.21.9315.618.32.652.8
Portland GeneralPOR-NUS19.5013.51.805.310.81.979.29.95.4-5.6
Idacorp Inc.IDA-NUS25.1512.42.368.610.72.495.810.15.0-2.3
Amerigon IncARGN-QUS6.7947.0-0.06-136.5NA0.10NA67.9NA34.4
* All figures in US$
Source: Thomson

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