If ever there were an industry in need of a general, it's the ethanol industry. Already under siege from food companies blaming biofuels for rising grocery prices, ethanol companies are now seeing their profit margins crushed by falling prices for their product. Compounding the problem, many environmentalists -- who five minutes ago seemed to be in ethanol's corner -- have turned against the corn-based fuel.
Riots from Haiti to Bangladesh to Egypt over the soaring costs of basic foods have brought the issue to a boiling point and catapulted it to the forefront of the world's attention, the head of an agency focused on global development said Monday.
The buzz surrounding ethanol producers is growing as the first of three companies gets set to go public, but analysts say retail investors should beware of the risks associated with getting in on the ethanol game.