Short Interest in Apple Drops 3.4 Million Shares

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Short sellers moved out of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) for the period that ended January 30. Perhaps they worried that Apple’s share price could rush higher, as it has. Apple’s stock price has risen 17% over the past month, compared to a 2% improvement in the S&P. Investor enthusiasm moved up again too, as Apple became the first company in history to have a market cap over $700 billion.

Apple’s share price sits at $122. At least one analyst believes it could rise to $150.

Apple gave another reason to pressure short sellers. On January 27, it posted revenue of $74.6 billion, up from $57.6 billion in the same quarter the year before. Net profit rose to $18 billion from $13.1 billion. At the center of its success, Apple sold 74.5 million iPhones. Management expects Chinese sales to help push that number higher. Apple’s growth curve should stay steep.

The short interest in Apple sat at 59.0 million shares as of January 30, down from 62.4 million for the period that ended January 15 — a 5.5% drop. Apple’s daily share volume averages 74.7 million. If Apple’s share price keeps rising, the short interest could drop again this month.

Apple’s market performance has been powerful by any measure. Short interest in its shares confirms that investors who bet on a share price increase have benefited. Those who have bet against it have run away.

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