Energy Business

Short Sellers Chase One Major Oil and Gas Stock

Crude oil traded around $25.55 a barrel early Tuesday, higher by more than $10 a barrel over the past two weeks. Fears of a longer, deeper glut of crude have been receding as stay-at-home orders related to the COVID-19 pandemic are being lifted and workers around the world return to their jobs.

Of the companies we watch, short interest decreased on three of six energy stocks during the two-week reporting period ending April 30.

Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX) saw short interest rise by 13% to 22.8 million shares, which represents about 1.2% of the company’s float. Days to cover rose from one to two. In the two-week short interest period, the stock’s share price rose by 11.3%. Its 52-week range is $51.60 to $127.00, and it traded at $93.05 on Tuesday.

Exxon Mobil Corp.’s (NYSE: XOM) short interest declined by 1.0% to 58.8 million shares, or about 1.4% of the company’s float. In the two weeks to April 30, the share price rose by about 14.8%. The stock’s 52-week range is $30.11 to $77.93 and it traded at $44.99 on Tuesday.

BP PLC (NYSE: BP) saw an increase of 34% in short interest during the latter half of April. About 0.4% of the total float, or 12.1 million American depositary shares (ADSs), were short, and days to cover remained at one. The company’s shares traded up by 4.2% over the two-week period, and they traded on Monday at $23.60, in a 52-week range of $15.51 to $43.00.

ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP) short interest fell by 13.0% in the two weeks to April 30. Some 14.1 million shares were short, representing about 1.3% of the company’s total float. Days to cover remained at two, and the stock price soared by 30.8% during the period. Shares traded Tuesday at $42.50, in a 52-week range of $20.84 to $67.13.

Petróleo Brasileiro S.A. (NYSE: PBR), or Petrobras, short interest rose by 8.0% during the period. Some 45.9 million ADSs were short as of April 30, about 1.1% of the total float. They traded at $6.75 on Tuesday, in a 52-week range of $4.01 to $16.95. Shares rose by around 9.3% in the two-week short interest period, and days to cover remained at one.

Occidental Petroleum Corp. (NYSE: OXY) saw short interest dip by 5.0% to 70.0 million shares. Days to cover dipped from three to two, and about 1.1% of the company’s shares were short. In the final two weeks of April, the share price rose by nearly 22%. Its 52-week range is $9.00 to $60.73, and shares traded Tuesday at $15.10.

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