Apple Inc.’s (NASDAQ: AAPL) short interest did not rise very much in the period that ended January 31. The number of shares short rose by 2.4 million to 47 million. Apple was the 12th most shorted stock, based on share count, among stocks that trade on the Nasdaq.
Give the trajectory of Apple’s stock and its good earnings, it is a surprise the figure rose at all. The stock is up 14% this year to just above $132. The increase has been relentless day by day, particularly since the company released earnings.
Earnings were impressive, as Apple had a quarter in which it set several records. According to CEO Tim Cook:
We’re thrilled to report that our holiday quarter results generated Apple’s highest quarterly revenue ever, and broke multiple records along the way. We sold more iPhones than ever before and set all-time revenue records for iPhone, Services, Mac and Apple Watch.
And the numbers were an improvement from the year-ago period:
… financial results for its fiscal 2017 first quarter ended December 31, 2016. The Company posted all-time record quarterly revenue of $78.4 billion and all-time record quarterly earnings per diluted share of $3.36. These results compare to revenue of $75.9 billion and earnings per diluted share of $3.28 in the year-ago quarter. International sales accounted for 64 percent of the quarter’s revenue.
The market also has started to anticipate the iPhone 8 launch, probably later this year. The new product may dispel worries that its features will not be much of a step up from the iPhone 7. MacRumors reports:
Apple has a major iPhone redesign planned for 2017, with a glass body and edge-to-edge OLED display that includes an integrated Touch ID fingerprint sensor and front-facing camera. The new iPhone may be sold alongside upgraded (but standard) 4.7 and 5.5-inch iPhones.
If Apple keeps up its positive momentum, short sellers may find themselves burned.