Analyzing Photronics (NASDAQ:PLAB) & First Solar (NASDAQ:FSLR)

Photronics (NASDAQ:PLABGet Free Report) and First Solar (NASDAQ:FSLRGet Free Report) are both computer and technology companies, but which is the superior stock? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their valuation, institutional ownership, profitability, analyst recommendations, earnings, dividends and risk.

Volatility and Risk

Photronics has a beta of 1.41, indicating that its share price is 41% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, First Solar has a beta of 1.37, indicating that its share price is 37% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

88.4% of Photronics shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 92.1% of First Solar shares are owned by institutional investors. 3.9% of Photronics shares are owned by company insiders. Comparatively, 0.6% of First Solar shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, hedge funds and endowments believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Profitability

This table compares Photronics and First Solar’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Photronics 15.34% 10.37% 8.69%
First Solar 28.75% 16.24% 10.61%

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current ratings and price targets for Photronics and First Solar, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Photronics 0 1 0 0 2.00
First Solar 0 1 23 0 2.96

Photronics presently has a consensus target price of $21.00, indicating a potential downside of 25.69%. First Solar has a consensus target price of $238.28, indicating a potential upside of 12.34%. Given First Solar’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe First Solar is more favorable than Photronics.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Photronics and First Solar’s revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Photronics $892.08 million 2.01 $125.49 million $2.23 12.67
First Solar $3.32 billion 6.84 $830.78 million $9.54 22.23

First Solar has higher revenue and earnings than Photronics. Photronics is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than First Solar, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Summary

First Solar beats Photronics on 12 of the 14 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Photronics

(Get Free Report)

Photronics, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, engages in the manufacture and sale of photomask products and services in the United States, Taiwan, China, Korea, Europe, and internationally. It offers photomasks that are used in the manufacture of integrated circuits and flat panel displays (FPDs); and to transfer circuit patterns onto semiconductor wafers, and FDP substrates. The company offers electrical and optical components. It sells its products to semiconductor and FPD manufacturers, designers, and foundries, as well as to other high-performance electronics manufacturers through its sales personnel and customer service representatives. The company was formerly known as Photronic Labs, Inc. and changed its name to Photronics, Inc. in 1990. Photronics, Inc. was incorporated in 1969 and is based in Brookfield, Connecticut.

About First Solar

(Get Free Report)

First Solar, Inc., a solar technology company, provides photovoltaic (PV) solar energy solutions in the United States, France, Japan, Chile, and internationally. The company manufactures and sells PV solar modules with a thin film semiconductor technology that provides a lower-carbon alternative to conventional crystalline silicon PV solar modules. It designs, manufactures, and sells cadmium telluride solar modules that converts sunlight into electricity. The company's residual business operations include project development activities, operations and maintenance services, and the sale of PV solar power systems to third-party customers. It serves developers and operators of systems, utilities, independent power producers, commercial and industrial companies, and other system owners. The company was formerly known as First Solar Holdings, Inc. and changed its name to First Solar, Inc. in 2006. First Solar, Inc. was founded in 1999 and is headquartered in Tempe, Arizona.

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