Solar Sector En Fuego Amid SunPower/Total Deal; Traders Bet On More Deals (TAN)

April 29, 2011 12:34 PM EDT
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Solar stocks are trading sharply higher Friday following news Thursday afternoon that SunPower (Nasdaq: SPWRA) and France's Total SA (NYSE: TOT) have agreed to a strategic partnership in which Total will purchase up to a 60 percent stake in SunPower for $1.38 billion.

Shares of SunPower are up more than 35 percent in afternoon trade Friday while Total shares are up 0.6 percent.

The key takeaway for investors is that Total, a major integrated oil & gas company, is now diversifying in a big way into solar. Will Exxon (NYSE: XOM) and others follow? Speculators are betting today that they will.

The Claymore/MAC Global Solar ETF (NYSE: TAN), a very quick-and-easy way to get a broad picture of the sector, is up 3.7 percent to $8.76.

Elsewhere in the sector:
  • First Solar (Nasdaq: FSLR) - up 1 percent
  • MEMC Electronic Materials (NYSE: WFR) - up 6.4 percent
  • Suntech (NYSE: STP) - up 0.4 percent
  • Canadian Solar (Nasdaq: CSIQ) - up 3.9 percent
  • JA Solar (Nasdaq: JASO) - up 6.4 percent
  • Evergreen Solar (Nasdaq: ESRL) - up 1.4 percent
  • Yingli (NYSE: YGE) - up 1.4 percent
  • Trina Solar (NYSE: TSL) - up 1.7 percent

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