Even as the market’s bull run is approaching nine years old, the markets have continued to reach new all-time highs. Judging by the most shorted stocks traded on the Nasdaq between the October 13 and October 31 settlement dates, short sellers remained selective, by and large.
Overall the short interest moves among these stocks were mixed, with only modest changes among the stocks at the top of the list. Further down the list, however, there were some big swings, such as a double-digit percentage drop in Comcast shares short. In addition, a women’s health company jumped into the top 10, where it appeared for the first time.
Note that still just three Nasdaq stocks had more than 100 million shares short as of Halloween.
The nearly 223.13 million Sirius XM Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: SIRI) shares short after the two weeks to October 31 were almost 4 million less than on the previous settlement date, and that was the lowest level of short interest so far this year. The latest reading represented 15.7% of the total float. The average daily volume rose again in the period, so the days to cover slipped from more than 15 to around 13.
During the period, Sirius posted subscriber net additions that were lower than expected. The stock ended the short interest period almost 5% lower than where it began it, though it had been up marginally earlier in the period. The Nasdaq rose less than 2% between the settlement dates. Sirius shares closed most recently at $5.31 apiece. That is less than the 52-week high of $5.89 seen near the end of July. The 52-week low of $4.22 was reached almost a year ago.
By the end of October, Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (NASDAQ: AMD) had more than 154.97 million shares short. That was growth of more than 4% from the total on the previous settlement date, and it represented 17.6% of the company’s float. It would take a little more than three days to cover all short positions. The highest level of short interest this year was over 160 million shares, or 18.2% of the float.
Despite the run up in the industry, AMD still is expected have momentum into 2018. The October 31 share price was more than 22% lower than on the previous settlement date, though the shares have recovered a little since then. The stock closed trading on Thursday at $11.12, which is more than 9% higher than six months ago. Shares have changed hands at between $6.22 and $15.65 apiece in the past year.
More than 134.9 million Intel Corp. (NASDAQ: INTC) shares were sold short as of the most recent settlement date. Again that was the greatest level of short interest in at least the past year, as the figure grew by around 3 million shares, or more than 2%. And it represented 2.9% of the company’s float. As of the end of last month, it would take more than four days for investors to cover all short positions.
Shares of this semiconductor giant hit a 17-year high late last month. The stock ended the short interest period with about a 16% gain, and it climbed a bit more after that. Intel closed most recently at $46.30 a share, down from a recent 52-week high of $47.30. The 52-week low is $33.23. The share price now is more than 27% higher than at the beginning of the year.