In a year that has been difficult on the whole for solar companies, SunPower stands out for its below average performance.
The VanEck Vectors Solar Energy ETF (KWT), which tracks companies that earn at least half of their revenues from the solar energy industry has a loss of 19.74% year to date on its returns.
While, SunPower, the second largest solar panel manufacturer in the country was trading at around $9 when the market closed with a loss of 55.49% for the same period.
SunPower is plagued by the same headwinds as the industry like reduced demand in the rooftop installation, decline in price of solar panels and weakened demand in China but it has additional problems of its own.
But a weaker than expected earnings report for the second quarter, plunged its price down from $14.78 to $10.31
The market was not expecting the large reduction in guidance, especially 35 percent cut in 2016 EBITDA, said Pavel Molchanov, senior vice president of energy equity research at Raymond James & Associates.
Another reason why SunPower is struggling more than some its peers is due to weakness in the power plant business, which is currently a big driver of revenue for the company.
Despite all the difficulties, Molchanov was optimistic about the future of SunPower and the solar industry in general, calling it cyclical in nature.
“We have seen this movie before, there is history in this industry of these rapid declines in margins and prices followed by stabilization,” he said.
He gave the example of 2012, one of the worst years for solar which was followed by one of the best years.
First Solar is the largest solar manufacturer in the country.