Major Oil Scares Off Short Sellers

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Crude oil had traded above $50 a barrel in the first quarter of this year, and finally it’s back to that magic number. If the price can hold near this level, analysts may start calling for the $60 price level, but oil has to stabilize here first after having flirted with this level for the past week. The current crude price is still less than half of what it was in 2014.

Also former Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson taking the role of Secretary of State could prove to be beneficial for the oil industry. Considering this, short interest for major oil stocks is now more important than ever to follow.

The September 29 short interest data have been compared with the previous figures, and short interest for most of the selected oil stocks decreased.

Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX) saw its short interest decrease to 28.23 million shares from the previous reading of 29.24 million. The shares were last seen trading at $119.36, in a 52-week range of $99.61 to $119.82.

Short interest in Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) decreased slightly to 37.93 million shares from the previous 38.15 million. The stock traded at $82.53, within a 52-week range of $76.05 to $93.21.

BP PLC (NYSE: BP) short interest increased to 9.34 million shares from the previous reading of 7.53 million. Shares traded at $38.80, in a 52-week range of $32.53 to $39.00.

The number of ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP) shares short decreased to 32.68 million from the previous level of 33.64 million. Shares were trading at $49.48, within a 52-week range of $40.37 to $53.17.

Short interest at Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. (NYSE: PBR), or Petrobras, increased to 34.83 million shares from the previous 33.33 million. The stock traded just below $10.50 a share, in a 52-week range of $7.61 to $12.56. Unfortunately, Petrobras may be trading on an entirely different set of fundamentals and sentiment due to its ongoing woes in Brazil.

Occidental Petroleum Corp.’s (NYSE: OXY) short interest decreased slightly to 9.26 million shares from the previous reading of 9.39 million. Shares recently traded at $64.33, in a 52-week range of $57.20 to $75.60.