Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Thought for the day - 9/29/08

Today alot of cash was pulled out of stocks. Maybe there will be more selling tomorrow.

At some point some, at least, of that money is going to go back into the market. Where is it going to go? Exxon was down 8.3% today, and other "Big Oil" suffered as much or more.

Ok, so LDK was down 15+%, but that's normal for LDK. What happened to Exxon isn't normal. In LDK's case, 5.11 Million Shares traded on average around $32 per Share. So, $163 Million traded hands on LDK, whereas $4.5 Billion traded on Exxon alone. The same kind of ratios apply to other companies in the Solar and Oil Industries.

The conclusion? Yeah, I don't know. The Markets are dangerous right now, but if reality sets in, it's a pretty safe bet that some of that money from the Oil Behemoths will spill onto World Solar. Big Money is simply UNABLE to make significant investment into this little critical industry without sending prices through the roof. We're seeing how long they can hold off, right now.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

WSJ - Bill Gates Goes For Algae, Invests in Biofuel Maker Sapphire Energy

Bill Gates is plunging his hands into pond scum.

"Cascades Investments LLC, Mr. Gates’ personal investment vehicle, is backing Sapphire Energy, a start up working towards a commercial-scale facility to produce oil from algae. And by all indications, he is not trying to save the world from its petroaddiction. He’s trying to make some money."

GE Energy - Threatens to Leave America if no Renewable Support.

“If the U.S.government is not going to be reliable and predictable [on clean-energy policy], we’ll go to Germany and China,”

- John Krenecki, head of GE Energy

'The head of GE Energy, the conglomerate’s unit that makes everything from wind turbines to nuclear reactors, flew down to Washington again today to plead with senators to extend tax credits for renewable energy. The credits, still crucial to making clean energy competitive, are set to expire at the end of the year, despite at least eight tries so far to renew them. That threatens to slam the brakes on two gangbuster years for American wind and solar power.'


That's right, GE is threatening to move their fastest growing Division OUT OF THE UNITED STATES, because of the expiration at the END OF THIS YEAR of the existing tax credits for Renewable Energy.

Congressional Democrats have tried EIGHT TIMES to get the credits extended, but the President and Lockstep Republicans have blocked every attempt. Why have they blocked it? Because they Refuse to PAY FOR IT. One of those attempts to extend the Credits was paid for by Deficit Spending, and guess what? It passed the Senated with 80 Votes. In that case, though, Democrats in the House refused to back it, because they are making the hard choice to be fiscally responsible. In another case, a Bill got to the Senate with 59 votes. McCain was in Washington DC and was available to vote, but he did not show up for work, instead he claimed that the issue needed further study. It's outrageous.

Friday, September 12, 2008

LDK News - New Contract - Q-Cells - UMG Processing.

LDK Solar Signs 11-Year Agreement for Processing of Solar-Grade Silicon for Q-Cells AG, Coupled With MOU for up to 5 GW in Additional Wafer Supplies

"LDK Solar Co., Ltd. (NYSE: LDK), a leading manufacturer of multicrystalline solar wafers, announced today that it has signed an 11-year processing service agreement to process upgraded metallurgical grade (UMG) solar-grade silicon provided by Germany-based Q-Cells AG into wafers.

Under the terms of the agreement, LDK Solar will process a minimum of 20,000 metric tons of UMG solar-grade silicon in the years 2008-2018, with an option to process an additional 21,000 metric tons during the same period. The processing service agreement is linked to a Memorandum of Understanding between the parties for LDK Solar to supply Q-Cells with up to five giga watts of multicrystalline solar wafers via a "take or pay" contract for the ten-year period between 2009-2018."

WOW! LDK Does it again, with a contract that assures that they'll have work available for every Wafer-Cutting Machine, and for pretty much as many employees as they can handle.

Their early adoption of UMG Technologies is a powerful advantage, particularly in today's Silicon Market, as the price of UMG is presently less than half the price of High Quality Polysilicon. It should also be noted that this supply agreement becomes effective THIS YEAR, 2008, and so will be reflected in Earnings for Q4, at least.

This is another example of LDK Maximizing their their use of all available Resources, for the purpose of growing business Now, and for the Future.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Senate Energy "gang" Grows To 20

This is a good compromise, and Obama has already stated that he would support it.

We need this Bill for a host of reasons, from Economic Benefit to National Energy Security Benefits.

It will be interesting to see what McCain says about it as I don't believe he's made any public statements on it.

Credit to Timdo67 of Yahoo for the link!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Biden / Friedman - Meet the Press - Video.

See it Here.

Excellent Interviews.

Biden definately shows his smarts in a way that I hadn't seen before, and Thomas Friedman is a must see if you're looking for the Energy Revolution. He's all over it, and from this interview, he's demonstrating that he's watching the situation carefully. He describes the situation with China well, and is clearly quite inspired.

Friday, September 5, 2008

More LDK News. WOW! 9/4/08

LDK Solar Signs Eight-Year Wafer Supply Agreement With Sumitomo Corporation

'LDK Solar Co., Ltd., a leading manufacturer of solar wafers, announced today that it has signed an eight-year contract with Japan- based Sumitomo Corporation ("SC"), one of the leading trading and investment houses in Japan to supply multicrystalline solar wafers to a leading manufacturer of solar cells and modules in Japan.
Under terms of the agreement, LDK Solar will deliver approximately 750 MW of multicrystalline silicon wafers to Sumitomo over an eight-year period, commencing in 2009 and extending through 2016. Sumitomo will make an advanced payment representing a portion of the contract value to LDK Solar.

"We are excited to announce this agreement with Sumitomo to supply high- quality wafers to Japan's leading manufacturer of solar modules," Xiaofeng Peng, Chairman and CEO of LDK Solar. "For LDK Solar, this supply contract with another industry leader, signifies another step towards our goal of becoming the leading supplier of wafers worldwide."'

Incredible! Three PR's in Three Days; Two of which being Wafer Contracts with PrePayments (as usual).

Not only this, but this particular deal expands LDK's relationships in Japan, which is the World's Second Largest Economy, and is particularly suited for Solar by its utter lack of Fossil Resources and Island Geography, as well as by its particular risks in the case of Climate Change.

You can bet that companies around the World are looking at the business that they're entering with LDK, and planning and designing the equipment and infrastructure that will be used to cheaply and efficiently turn all of these LDK Wafers into Modules for sale on the World Market.

LDK has set out to become a World Class company, and every day it seems that they leave us with a new pice of Evidence.

Spain raises Solar Limit to 450MW for '09 and '10

Spain Raises Cap on Solar Energy in Revision, Confidencial Says

"Sept. 4 (Bloomberg) -- Spain raised the limit on solar energy production to as much 450 megawatts for next year and 2010 in a revision to proposed rules, El Confidencial reported, citing unidentified people in the industry.

Spain's Industry Ministry will cap output at 400 megawatts to 450 megawatts a year, up from a proposal of 300 megawatts, El Confidencial said."

For some Background of the situation in Europe, see this.

Here's a new IBD article on Solar Pricing Estimates

Credit to Hacker4502 and Diaoko of Yahoo for links.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

LDK Reactor Contract - GT Solar - 9/4/08

LDK Solar Signs Polysilicon Reactor Agreement With GT Solar for an Estimated Value of $32 Million

"LDK Solar Co., Ltd., a leading manufacturer of solar wafers, today announced it has signed a new agreement with GT Solar International, Inc. (Nasdaq: SOLR) ("GT Solar") to purchase polysilicon CVD reactors for installation in LDK Solar's manufacturing facilities in Xinyu City, Peoples Republic of China. This equipment is used to make polysilicon. The estimated value of the contract is $32 million.

"We are pleased to have signed this new agreement with GT Solar, a valued provider with which we have a long-standing relationship," said Xiaofeng Peng, LDK Solar's chairman and chief executive officer. "As the demand for solar energy continues to grow, so does our need to increase and accelerate our manufacturing capacity. With GT Solar's reactor and DSS furnace technologies and expertise, we feel confident that we will be able to meet our rising production goals."

"During the more than five years that GT Solar has been conducting business in China, we've designed manufacturing processes and supplied equipment to some of the country's largest solar wafer and cell producers, including LDK Solar," said Tom Zarrella, president and chief executive officer for GT Solar. "We look forward to continuing our work with LDK Solar, and to helping this company further its position as a leader in low cost solar wafer manufacturing."

Polysilicon is a highly purified form of silicon that is used to make both semiconductor wafers for microelectronics applications and solar wafers. The chemical vapor deposition process involved in the production of polysilicon takes place in a specialized CVD reactor using a variety of complex chemical processes."

This is great news!

Why? Well, there are Wafer Deals, and there are Poly Deals. There are Foreign Deals, and there are US Deals. This is a combination of the best two options.

Obviously, WS is perfectly capable of selling off wafer deals.

For one thing, traders are well trained by now to sell these off. Plus, with Asensio and a WAVE of short spammers on the boards, there has clearly been additional pressure to sell.

For another thing, ultimately, LDK's wafer business is completely dependent on the success of their poly prodution business. Wafers are valuable, but Poly is absolutely critical.

Therefore, this is a great deal for LDK.

No, it's not poly production, that's still coming soon, but it reinforces their intense dedication to massive quantities of Poly Production. It also reinforces the relationship between LDK Solar of China, and GT Solar of the United States. Not only is it supportive of GT's commitment to LDK, but it also reflects on GT's confidence in signing an equipment deal for valuable Technology with a Chinese Company. It speaks to the Integrity of LDK in terms of Intellectual Property.

In conclusion, a reiteration of the mutually beneficial relationship between LDK Solar and GT Solar is a very comforting bit of news.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

The Tao and LDK.

One of the various places that I read things has a "daily tao" posting, of various chapters / translations of the "Tao te Ching."

I already associate alot of how I see China, as well as how I see this struggle between the Business of LDK vs. Short Interest, in terms of the Tao te Ching.

I just happened to actually read today's "daily tao," and thought it terribly relevant to the way Mr. Peng has been dealing with this conflict all along.

Here goes:

Whenever you advise a ruler in the way of Tao,
Counsel him not to use force to conquer the universe.
For this would only cause resistance.
Thorn bushes spring up wherever the army has passed.
Lean years follow in the wake of a great war.
Just do what needs to be done.
Never take advantage of power.

Achieve results,
But never glory in them.
Achieve results,
But never boast.
Achieve results,
But never be proud.
Achieve results,
Because this is the natural way.
Achieve results,
But not through violence.

Force is followed by loss of strength.
This is not the way of Tao.
That which goes against the Tao comes to an early end.

Somewhat depressing article behind the link.


"The way I see it, our markets are now largely out of the hands of “investors” and are mainly controlled by large trading funds, which use “black box” computers to trade the markets in a very highly-aggressive and rapid fashion. I have it on pretty good authority that there is a single hedge fund (just one) that constitutes 10% of all shares traded on any given day."