INTRO Here's my semi-annual exercise to see if I remember why I own the stocks I own, and so I can check back and see if their stories have changed. I post in case it helps others too.AMSC AMSC (market cap is $0.201B was $0.239B)AMSC (formerly AMerican SuperConductor) manufactures superconducting cables, motors, voltage regulators, and designs various electrical utility infrastructure components like wind turbines. Ideally, superconducting cables can do for electricity what fiber optics did for telecommunications. Their technology has been proven and implemented by a variety of customers. Improving the electrical utility infrastructure is a growing market globally. Here’s the ‘unfortunately’ part. The electrical utility industry is conservative making it less likely to embrace new technologies. Several years after proving the technology would be a time for increased adoption, but there’s little evidence that is occuring. AMSC’s technology remains popular enough that a customer stole it to become a competitor; unfortunately, the somewhat successful lawsuit only returned about a tenth or less of one year’s damages. Graphene and other technologies have been advancing, easing the operating conditions, potentially dropping the price, and effectively competing against a twenty-plus year old technology. Pardon me as I kick myself. I intended to sell at least a portion when the stock was above $10. (Hey, business as a real estate broker, my fallback since my portfolio fell back, has kept me busy.) Now, with aging technology and new trade wars I have less enthusiasm for AMSC’s future. I’ll hold, waiting for an end to the trade wars or for some surprising orders. A lot can happen in one tweet. DISCLOSURE LTBH since 2003 but the first shares were sold years ago, fortuitously in hindsight because I actually made a profit. (I've also collected links to the other discussion boards and my other stocks over on my blog http://trimbathcreative.wordpress.com/2019/06/30/semi-annual...)
ALWAYS enjoy your reviews. The rose on AMSC's bush of thorns is the 2020 election. According to the first debate (Night 2), Ms. Warren wants to increase R&D spending for green technologies by 10-fold.I own a couple stocks with 2020 in mind. Ballard has been a budding opportunity for decades. Maybe its third decade will be when it blooms. Speaking of Bloom, my wife owns BE and she has done great over the years picking tech winners. Here long-term holds include Apple and Facebook. She recently purchased Bloom Energy and Google.Back to 2020. There are a number of companies working on green hydrogen (like XON and XOM) but I also follow FCEL -- which just reverse split for 1-for-10 in late 2018. Yikes! And then the stock tanked all the way down to $.17 -- but FCEL can produce hydrogen from its tri-model fuel cell which Toyota is testing in LA/Long Beach harbor. FCEL is a fuel cell or three orders away from getting its operations back on track. The hundreds of millions have been spend to find the technology solutions. These old-horses like BLDP, XON, GEVO (for green energy), and FCEL need a boost into pilot or larger projects. We are NOT 10 years away from these solutions if government spending gets ramped up and gets a made-in-America requirement. I like these companies if Ms. Warren wins the presidency.AMSC has been a hard-love stock. It's always lacked a government sponsor and the Chinese theft should have been handled like the theft it was. I think Ms. Warren is serious about R&D. Battered but technically alive alternative technology stocks might be the big winners if she wins.Just a thought and not an indication how I will vote. I am a lifelong registered D voter...W.D.
As a bombed out holder I wouldn't hang my investment thesis on a 2020 election outcome peg. We had 8 years of a Democrat president following 8 years of a Republican - I haven't noticed any material difference in the performance of this company or its fortunes going forwards.It just feels that the idea of superconductor cables replacing the grid is just dead in the water and the impact of China on the rest of the business (wind tech) has left it pretty much a zombie company.It just isn't sustainable to be operating predicated on winning the odd military research contract here and there for an electric ship engine or single electricity grid station etc. I see no mass adoption of their core products which must be redundant technology now in any case.(As much as it pains me to says this).A
With the need for improved infrastructure and efficiencies, stocks like AMSC seem like naturals; yet, they languish. I wonder if AMSC is like the Altair - early to the market (PCs for those who don't know), but quickly supplanted by another upstart that took the idea a bit further. I continue to wonder why RSOL couldn't succeed in the solar power market, especially because it had a multi-year lead on the competition. I'm Holding AMSC but must admit that I can easily be swayed by investing in a company with a strategy that somehow takes the idea a bit further. There's certainly a need.
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