Key sustainable energy indices rise, LED-Lighting suffers (week ending 8/1)

Author: Mark Henwood

EAFA fell 2.2%; Emerging Markets, S&P500, and commodities (DJP) treaded water.

The two key strategies, Renewable Electricity and Solar, posted gains for the week.

Solar’s 4.1% gain reduced the index’s loss for the year to 31.7%. This highly volatile strategy saw some big gains with Day4Energy (DFE.TO) leading the way with a 24.6% rise. Most of the increase occurred after the company reported on July 30 that they had achieved a 19% efficiency with multi-crystalline cells in the lab and they expect this development to drive costs down by up to 25% in 2009.

Renewable Electricity also saw a 1.1% advance with Canadian Hydro Developers (KHD.TO) leading the way with a 23.7% gain, the best performance for the week in the TSX Composite Index. The company had an analyst upgrade during the week which apparently triggered the gain. Another notable gain was notched by Suzlon (SUZLON.NS) which reported strong earnings growth in their last quarter.

LED-Lighting had a dismal week with the group falling 9.4%. Rubicon (RBCN) led the way down despite reporting in their Wednesday morning call that they beat guidance. The sell-off started on Thursday after Oppenheimer downgraded the stock and continued through Friday declining 23.5% for the week. Management reported continued enthusiasm for the LED segment but expressed some uncertainty regarding their SoS segment which accounts for about 30% of their business. Investors apparently have almost written off the SoS business line.

Mark is the founder of Camino Energy, an information provider specializing in globally traded sustainable energy stocks. He also is an investor in sustainable energy stocks and has positions in Renewable Electricity, including KHD.TO.