In the previous short interest report, many of the major oil stocks had their highest short interest readings. However, the current report could suggest that short sellers worried that a bottom was in or was at least in sight for these major oil stocks. Where this gets interesting is that as the short interest was backing off its highs, stock prices for major oil companies have remained weak. Perhaps investors have to consider that the short interest data still has a look-back and also that many investors were attempting to bottom-fish at the end of February.
24/7 Wall St. has evaluated the key short interest data for the settlement date of February 27, 2015, and compared it to the prior settlement date of February 13.
Common sense would say that short sellers have already made huge bets and boatloads of money as the stocks and commodities around the oil patch have suffered. Investors should understand that, while short sellers have lightened up, the current short interest readings remain at elevated levels, after falling off their new highs for the most recent settlement date. It would seem as the true bears may have stayed in the game.
Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX) saw its short interest fall off its 52-week high to 22.8 million shares, with 3.4 days to cover. The previous reading was 24.4 million, with 2.8 days to cover. The most recent four readings have been the highest short interest for the past year. Shares closed Tuesday at $102.91, in a 52-week trading range of $98.88 to $135.10.
ALSO READ: The 5 Most Shorted NYSE Stocks at the End of February
Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) saw its short interest decrease to 42.3 million shares, with 3.0 days to cover. The previous reading for short interest was 43.7 million, with 2.9 days to cover. Shares closed Tuesday at $84.26, within a 52-week trading range of $84.24 to $104.76.
BP PLC (NYSE: BP) short interest backed off its highest level in the past 52-weeks to 10.9 million shares, with 2.4 days to cover, from 12.8 million with 1.4 days to cover. The most recent six readings are the highest on the 52-week range, excluding a spike in September. Shares closed Tuesday at $39.04, in a 52-week trading range of $34.88 to $53.48.
ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP) saw the number of its shares short again fall slightly to its one of its highest levels on the year of 30.1 million, with 4.1 days to cover. However, these most recent six readings have been the highest on the 52-week range. The previous reading was 30.5 million, with 3.2 days to cover. Prior to these past six readings, short interest generally remained within the range of 20 million to 24 million. Shares closed Tuesday at $60.87, within a 52-week trading range of $60.64 to $87.09.
Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. (NYSE: PBR), or Petrobras, saw its short interest fall way off to its 52-week high of 99.9 million shares, with 2.6 days to cover. The previous level was 115.0 million, with 2.2 days to cover. The five most recent short interest readings have been the highest in the past 52-weeks. Shares closed Tuesday at $5.30, in a 52-week trading range of $5.30 to $20.94. As a reminder, Petrobras shares are almost certainly trading on an entirely different set of fundamentals and sentiment due to its corruption and business woes in Brazil.
Occidental Petroleum Corp. (NYSE: OXY) saw its short interest fall to 10.0 million shares, with 2.5 days to cover. The previous reading was 12.9 million shares, with 2.2 days to cover. The previous reading was the highest in the past 52-weeks. Shares closed Tuesday at $73.82, in a 52-week trading range of $72.32 to $101.38.
ALSO READ: 6 Oil Stocks Analysts Want You to Buy Now
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