Alternative Energy Trade Option: Pacific Ethanol Inc. (PEIX)
  • Stock Alert for Pacific Ethanol Inc. (PEIX)
  • Stock Alert for Pacific Ethanol Inc. (PEIX)
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    Stock Report for Pacific Ethanol Inc. (PEIX)

    Pacific Ethanol Inc. (PEIX) is a marketer and producer of low-carbon renewable fuels in the Western United States. It also sells co-products, including wet distillers grain (WDG), a nutritional animal feed. Serving integrated oil companies and gasoline marketers who blend ethanol into gasoline, the Company provides transportation, storage and delivery of ethanol through third-party service providers in the Western United States, primarily in California, Nevada, Arizona, Oregon, Colorado, Idaho and Washington. PEIX has a 20% ownership interest in New PE Holdco LLC, the owner of four ethanol production facilities. The Company operates and manages the four ethanol production facilities, which have a combined annual production capacity of 200 million gallons. The facilities in operation are located in Boardman, Oregon; Burley, Idaho; and Stockton, California; and one idled facility is located in Madera, California. The facilities are near their respective fuel and feed customers, offering significant timing, transportation cost and logistical advantages. PEIX’s subsidiary, Kinergy Marketing LLC, markets ethanol from Pacific Ethanol’s managed plants and from other third-party production facilities, and another subsidiary, Pacific Ag. Products LLC, markets WDG.

    Share Statistics (27-Feb-11) FY2009 FY2010 % Chg Q32010 Q32011 % Chg
    Symbol PEIX Revenue, $Mn 316.56 328.33 3.7% 46.04 271.65 490.0%
    Current price $1.61 Gross marg. -7.0% -0.2% -97.1% 8.6% 3.0% -65.1%
    52wk Range: $0.25-$5.74 Oper. margin -97.3% 22.5% -123.1% 1.7%
    Avg Vol (3m): 6,169,130 Net margin -97.3% 22.5% -123.1% -26.3% 1.6% -106.1%
    Market Cap. 147.46M
    Shares Outstanding 91.59M EPS, $ -7.55 -3.14 -58.4% -1.10 0.12 -110.9%

    Source:, SEC Filings.

    Investment Highlights

    Pacific Ethanol Inc. (PEIX) traded up 15.8% to close at $1.61 Monday, ahead of its earnings report. Over 33.49 million shares traded hands during the session, versus the 10-day average volume of over 7.09 million.  PEIX is currently above its 50-day moving average of $1.12 and above its 200-day moving average of $0.77.

    PEIX have risen 47.7% in the last five days and 51.9% in the last month. Year-to-date, the stock is down 67.4%

    Following the closing bell, the renewable fuels company posted its financial results for the fourth quarter and year-end 2011, showing increases in net sales and operating income.

    Neil Koehler, president and CEO of PEIX, made the following statements: We reported record growth, increased our ownership in the Pacific Ethanol plants and repaid in full $35 million of convertible debt. We grew operating income significantly compared to last year and continued to diligently manage our costs. These accomplishments illustrate the strength of our business model and lay the foundation for profitable growth in 2012.”

    PEIX reported net sales of $241.8 million for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2011, an increase of 80% from $134.2 million reported in the fourth quarter of 2010. The Company mainly attributed the growth in net sales to increases in total gallons sold and its average sales price per gallon.

    The Company sold total gallons of 116.3 million for the fourth quarter, up 53% over the 76.0 million gallons sold in the comparable quarter of the prior year, citing increases in both production gallons and third party gallons sold. The Company’s average sales price per gallon increased 20%. PEIX’s latest results also include the impact of the Stockton plant’s operations, which was idled during most of the fourth quarter of 2010.

    PEIX reported a net loss of $2.4 million during the fourth quarter, marking over 80% improvement in net loss from the same period a year ago. Adjusted EBITDA, which excludes the Company’s fair value adjustments on its convertible notes and warrants, declined to a loss of $0.3 million for the fourth quarter of 2011 from income of $2.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2010.

    For the full year, net sales were $901.2 million, representing an increase of 174% over net sales of $328.3 million in the prior year. Full-year net income came in at $1.8 million, compared to $71.0 million in the same period in 2010, which included a non-cash gain from bankruptcy exit of $119.4 million. Adjusted EBITDA for the full year was $5.3 million, reversing the year-ago loss of $10.1 million.


    Financial Strength (27-Feb-2012)




    S&P 500

    Quick Ratio (MRQ) 2.32 1.94 0.56 0.62
    Current Ratio (MRQ) 3.27 16.09 0.80 0.97
    LT Debt to Equity (MRQ) 373.61 16.20 12.24 166.51
    Total Debt to Equity (MRQ) 418.49 21.39 16.88 224.41
    Interest Coverage (TTM) -15.67 3.80 26.16

    Source:, SEC Filings.

    Technical Analysis


    Comparative Analysis

    Company Name Ticker Price per Mrkt. Cap. P/E P/S
    Feb27-2011 symbol Share, $ $ Mn 2011 2012 2011 2012
    BioFuel Energy Corp. BIOF 0.85 87.04M n/a n/a 0.17 0.15
    Aventine Renewable Energy Holdings Inc. AVRW 3.61 27.04M n/a n/a 0.03 0.02
    Archer Daniels Midland Co. ADM 31.71 20.98B 12.39 10.13 0.24 0.23
    Specialty Chemicals Median       12.25 n/a 0.77 n/a
    Pacific Ethanol Inc. PEIX 1.61 147.46M n/a n/a n/a n/a

    Source: Thomson Financial

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