On Nasdaq Peak Holiday, Shorts Exit Tech And Junk Stocks

On the tenth anniversary of the tech bubble of 2000, short sellers aggressively dropped their bets against hardware, software and internet companies. Figures are from February 28.

The short interest in Apple (AAPL) fell 15% to 17.3 million. Shares short in Microsoft (MSFT) were down 5% to 53 million. The short interest in Amazon (AMZN) fell 10% to 10.4 million. Shares short in Micron (MU) were down 17% to 51.5 million. Shares short in Cisco (CSCO) dropped 8% to 48.1 million. The short interest in Symantec (SYMC) dropped 14% to 23.9 million. Shares short in RF Micro (RFMD) dropped 14% to 20.7 million shares.

Short sellers moved out of weak stocks, a sign that investors expect a rebound at the bottom of the market. Shares short in Xerox (XRX) fell 53% to 15.1 million. Shares short in Alcatel-Lucent (ALU) was down 40% to 23.3 million. The short interest in Blockbuster (BBI) was down 38% to 17.3 million. Shares sold short in Pulte Homes (PHM) dropped 12% to 33.3 million. Shares short in Eastman Kodak (EK) was off by 8% to 53.6 million. The short interest in Motorola (MOT) were down 7% to 52 million

Among widely held shares, the short interest in Citigroup (C) was up 8% to 482 million. Shares short in Ford (F) rose 6% to 177 million. The short interest in Exxon Mobil (XOM) was up 3% to 85 million and shares short in Nokia were flat at 79 million.

Data from NYSE and NASDAQ.

Douglas A. McIntyre