UPDATE 1-JinkoSolar posts sixth straight quarterly loss on low prices
* Sees 1st-qtr panel shipments of 270 MW to 300 MW
* 4th-qtr rev down less than 3 percent
* 4th-qtr loss $5.51/ADS, vs loss $2.58/ADS year earlier
April 10 (Reuters) - Chinese solar company JinkoSolar Holding Co Ltd reported its sixth straight quarterly loss due to a continued decline in solar panel prices, sending its shares down nearly 3 percent before the bell.
Loss of subsidies in top market Europe and rapid manufacturing capacity expansion in China have contributed to a 66 percent decline in solar panel prices in the last two years.
Solar panels, which cost as much as $3.50 per watt in 2005, are now selling at about 70 cents.
JinkoSolar forecast total solar module shipment of 270 megawatt (MW) to 300 (MW) for the first quarter, higher than the 252.3 MW it shipped in the fourth quarter.
For the full year, the company expects to ship between 1.2 gigawatt (GW) and 1.5 GW of solar modules, higher than the 912.4 MW it shipped last year. It expects to develop 200 MW to 300 MW solar projects this year.
The company, like its peers, is betting on emerging solar markets such as China, Japan, United States, South Africa and India as the European market continues to shrink.
JinkoSolar expects the United States to account for a large share of its shipments this year, despite facing an anti-dumping duty of 15.42 percent and countervailing duty of 15.24 percent.
The European Union may impose provisional duties on imports of Chinese solar panels and components. The European Commission is examining if Chinese products were being dumped in Europe and a ruling is expected by June 6.
The United States has already imposed duties on imports of China-made solar cells.
Jinkosolar signed a $58 million loan agreement with state-run China Development Bank earlier this month to help fund solar power plant projects in China.
"As one of the first solar companies tapping into the growth potential of China's solar market, we have managed to secure multiple contracts and repeat business," the company said in a statement.
Jinkosolar has received generous loans from China Development Bank and is slated to receive $1 billion over five years to fund solar projects outside China.
The European commission in November also began a study into allegations that Chinese company had received illegal subsidies.
JinkoSolar's net loss widened to $122.2 million, or $5.51 per American depository share (ADS), in the fourth quarter, from $58.3 million, or $2.58 per ADS, a year earlier.
Revenue fell less than 3 percent to $187.3 million.
JinkoSolar's stock has fallen more than 6 percent this year, closing at $5.80 on Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange. The broader MAC Global Energy Index has risen nearly 14 percent in the same period.