Weak oil outlook propels investor interest in renewable-energy technologies

Even as the pandemic continues to drive down consumer spending and depress oil prices, investors are spending big on clean-tech companies. Shares are now near record highs, the latest sign that wind and solar are no longer fringe bets.

Electric-carmaker Tesla Inc. has grabbed much of the attention with a 255% jump this year. But the stock surge is hitting across clean tech, from solar installers to fuel-cell providers to wind companies. Vivint Solar Inc. has tripled and Sunrun Inc. nearly tripled, while Sunnova Energy International Inc. and Enphase Energy Inc. have doubled. The WilderHill New Energy Global Innovation Index of 87 companies has soared 29% this year, eclipsing the Nasdaq’s 22% gain–and hitting highs last seen 12 years ago.

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