Anyone following clean energy knew this could be a tough year for solar. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. just put a grim number on how bad.
The pace of global installations will contract by 24 percent in 2018, Goldman analysts led by Brian Lee said in a research note late Wednesday. That’s far more dire than the 3 percent decline forecast by Bloomberg NEF in the bleakest of three scenarios outlined in a report earlier this month. Credit Suisse Group AG is forecasting a 17 percent contraction.
The anticipated slowdown would mark the first time the solar market has shrunk. It comes after China announced in late May it was curbing utility-scale development in the world’s biggest market, pulling the plug on about 20 gigawatts of projects. That will reduce global installations to 75 gigawatts, down from 99 gigawatts in 2017, Lee said in an email.
“Lowering our coverage view to cautious, we believe oversupply is set to continue in the near-to-medium term as demand from the largest solar markets remains tepid,” Lee wrote in the research note.
JinkoSolar Holding Co., the world’s largest panel maker, fell as much as 3.2 percent, the most intraday in a week. The Bloomberg Intelligence Global Large Solar index declined as much as 2.1 percent.