Renewable energy uses to be seen as a threat to the existing utility sector. But now solar investments have filtered into utilities’ regulated service territories. But which part of the renewable market and how those markets are played can make a significant difference in a given company’s outcome.
Challenging economics have prompted operators to shut down a number of nuclear power plants. Dozens of closures will follow in coming years, unless lobbying efforts convince states to subsidize these facilities with zero-emission credits.
Last month, Barron's published a sensationalist article warning of a looming death spiral for US electric utilities and traditional power generators. Although stretched valuations may mean that utility stocks are overdue for a pullback in the near term, the sector's future prospects remain undiminished.
The proposed combination of SolarCity and Tesla Motors amounts to little more than a bailout of the fatally flawed renewable-energy company that loses more money with each incremental sale. Investors looking for exposure to clean energy should stay away.
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