While some of these solar players are not changing their forecasts on shipments, all have seen gross margin declines since last year, and the capacity expansion that is taking place this year will only make matters worse for margins. Capacity is expected to grow by 9,500 megawatts in 2011, to a worldwide total of 41,500 megawatts, while global demand for solar panels is forecast for around 28,000 megawatts.. . .
The second weight on share prices is a fuller understanding of just how much many of the solar makers depend on European sales, particularly Germany, Italy, and Spain. With that understanding comes the realization that both Italy and Spain are suffering from bigger problems than continuing solar subsidies, and that German sales will not be robust as before.