Short Sellers Flee Tech

Douglas A. McIntyre

Short sellers who have bet against tech shares hit the exits during the period which ended on March 31. The short interest in the world’s largest chip company, Intel (NASDAQ: INTC), dropped 3% to 56.7 million shares. Shares sold short in Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) dropped 13% to 54.6 million.

Shares short in graphics chip leader Nvidia (NASDAQ: NVDA) dropped 17% to 23.1 million. The short interest in RF Microsystems (NASDAQ: RFMD) dropped 9% to 18 million. Shares short in Seagate (NASDAQ: STX) dropped 11% to 12.4 million shares. The short interest in Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM) fell by 6% to 17.8 million.

Although there is no way to measure the real interest of short sellers, it may be that the proliferation of computers, tablets, and smartphones is great enough to cause Wall St. to believe that sales of many chip and infrastructure firms will rise.

Short interest among other widely traded stocks was mixed: Level 3 (NASDAQ: LVLT) off 4% to 89.4 million, Research In Motion (NASDAQ: RIMM) up 19% to 28.9 million, Sprint Nextel (NYSE: S) down 14% to 94.4 million, AT&T (NYSE: T) up 10% to 56.8 million. and CBS (NYSE: CBS) up 90% to 21.1 million

Data from NYSE and NASDAQ.

Douglas A. McIntyre