Short interest figures for the end of May were released on Monday after the close, and yesterday we published our semi-monthly look at short interest trends for the S&P 1500 based on market caps, sectors, and groups, as well as stocks with the highest and lowest levels of short interest. We also include an analysis of how the most and least heavily shorted stocks have been performing. The table below contains a summary of the 25 stocks in the S&P 1500 that have the highest levels of short interest as a percentage of float.  For each stock, we also include its performance so far in June.

Overall, the 25 stocks highlighted below are up an average of 4.92% (median: 4.76%) so far in June compared to a gain of 1.34% for the S&P 1500. Topping the list of most shorted stocks at the end of May were shares of Dillard’s (DDS) and Shake Shack (SHAK), which each have over half of their free-floating shares sold short. While people can’t get enough of their burgers, investors want nothing to do with Shake Shack stock. Despite the negative sentiment towards both stocks, though, each of them are up so far in June. Finally, as has become a common trend in recent months, many of the most shorted stocks listed like Fred’s (FRED), RH, Big 5 Sporting Goods (BGFV), JC Penney (JCP), Rent-A-Center (RCII), and Big Lots (BIG) are connected to retail as negative bets towards the sector continue to pile up. While the prospects for brick and mortar retail aren’t bright, the trade to bet against them has been getting crowded.

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