3D Printing Sector Still Attractive to Short Sellers

3D pointedsphere
Source: courtesy of 3D Systems Inc.
We continue to track the short interest changes in the primary 3D printer and services companies. The following information is based on data reported for the period ended February 28, 2014.

Short interest in 3D Systems Corp. (NYSE: DDD) rose 2.9% to 24.53 million shares. Some 25.2% of the company’s stock is short. Days to cover is four. In the two-week short interest period to February 28, the share price rose about 7.5%, but it is down about 34% for the year to date as of Tuesday night. The stock’s 52-week range is $27.88 to $97.28, and shares closed Tuesday at $62.09, down almost $2 in a single day.

Short interest in Proto Labs Inc. (NYSE: PRLB) decreased by 9% to 2.79 million shares, or 12.5% of the company’s float. Days to cover is six. Shares were up about 4% in the two-week period and closed last night at $71.28, up less than 2% year to date. The stock’s 52-week range is $43.62 to $89.97.

Stratasys Ltd. (NASDAQ: SSYS) saw short interest rise 6.3% in the final two weeks of February to 2.14 million shares, or about 5.1% of the company’s float. Days to cover is two. Shares gained about 3.3% in the two-week period but have since slipped, closing down last night at $113.10, a drop of nearly 16% for the year to date. The stock’s 52-week range is $61.15 to $138.10.

Short interest in The ExOne Co. (NASDAQ: XONE) rose 6.2% to 3.43 million shares. About 32.9% of the company’s shares are now held short. Shares of ExOne were down about 0.2% in the two-week period and closed at $42.43 Tuesday, down about 32% year to date. The stock’s 52-week range is $27.72 to $78.80, and days to cover is nine.

Voxeljet A.G. (NYSE: VJET) saw short interest rise by 0.9% to 2.68 million shares, with a days to cover number of six. Since coming public at $19 in mid-October, the share price is up about 60%. Year to date, however, shares are down 27%, but they were up more than 4.55% in the two-week period to February 28. The stock closed at $31.60 on Tuesday, in a post-IPO range of $19.30 to $70.00.

Only ProtoLabs saw a drop in short interest, and that is likely because it does not compete with others that are trying to sell equipment. Its business model is fixed around rapid prototyping using 3D printers, and that has been stable if not exactly spectacular.

Another thing to keep in mind is that Barron’s ran an unflattering story last weekend on the 3D printing sector, and that could have an impact on short interest in the current two-week period.

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