Shorting Schlumberger: Short Interest in SLB as of March 17
Short interest in Schlumberger
Short interest in Schlumberger (SLB) stock as a percentage of its float was ~1.0% as of March 17, 2017, which reflects a fall from its level on December 30, 2016. Since the end of 4Q16, short interest in SLB stock has fallen 16%. Notably, SLB’s stock price and short interest as a percentage of float have been inversely related for the past two years.
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Short interest and stock price
Short interest refers to the number of shares sold short, divided by the number of shares outstanding. A fall in short interest as a percentage of float, or a fall in short interest, indicates that fewer investors expect a stock’s price to fall. SLB’s stock price has fallen 5% since December 30, 2016, despite its fall in short interest.
However, investors should note that the market can always go against investor sentiment. Share prices increase when investors start buying a stock to cover their short positions. Energy stocks are typically correlated with crude oil prices.
Notably, Schlumberger makes up 7.5% of the iShares US Energy ETF (IYE). The oil and gas equipment and services industry makes up 15.8% of IYE. For more on SLB, check out Market Realist’s Schlumberger’s Valuation Compared to Its Peers in 2017.
Now let’s explore SLB’s correlation with the price of crude oil.